13 July, 2008

Tony Benn

Anthony "Tony" Neil Wedgwood Benn, formerly 2nd Viscount Stansgate, is a British socialist politician.

He was instrumental in the creation of the Peerage Act 1963. During the 1970s and 1980s, he was the prominent figure on the left of the Labour Party.

In the 1970s Harold Wilson government, he initially served as Secretary of State for Industry before being transferred to Secretary of State for Energy. When Wilson retired in 1976, Benn retained his post under the new Prime Minister, James Callaghan.

After John Parker, he is Labour's longest serving member of parliament. He is known as one of the few UK politicians to have become more left-wing after holding ministerial office. He also has become ever more interested in the grass-roots politics of demonstrations and meetings, and ever less in parliamentary activities. He has been a vegetarian since the 1970s.

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