Margaret Patricia Curran (born 24 November 1958) is a Scottish Labour Party politician, who was Member of Parliament (MP) for Glasgow East from 2010 to 2015 and was Shadow Secretary of State for Scotland from 2011 until 2015. She was previously Member of the Scottish Parliament for Glasgow Baillieston from 1999 to 2011, and held a number of posts within the Scottish Executive, including Minister for Parliamentary Business, Minister for Social Justice and Minister for Communities.
|Shadow Secretary of State for Scotland|
7 October 2011 – 8 May 2015
|Preceded by||Ann McKechin|
|Succeeded by||Ian Murray|
|Shadow Minister for Disabled People|
8 October 2010 – 8 October 2011
|Preceded by||Jonathan Shaw|
|Succeeded by||Anne McGuire|
|Minister for Parliamentary Business|
4 October 2004 – 17 May 2007
|First Minister||Jack McConnell|
|Preceded by||Patricia Ferguson|
|Succeeded by||Bruce Crawford|
|Minister for Communities|
21 May 2003 – 4 October 2004
|First Minister||Jack McConnell|
|Preceded by||Position established|
|Succeeded by||Malcolm Chisholm|
|Minister for Social Justice|
9 May 2002 – 21 May 2003
|First Minister||Jack McConnell|
|Preceded by||Iain Gray|
|Succeeded by||Position abolished|
|Member of Parliament|
for Glasgow East
6 May 2010 – 7 May 2015
|Preceded by||John Mason|
|Succeeded by||Natalie McGarry|
|Member of the Scottish Parliament|
for Glasgow Baillieston
6 May 1999 – 22 March 2011
|Preceded by||Constituency established|
|Succeeded by||Constituency abolished|
|Born||24 November 1958|
|Alma mater||University of Glasgow|
Curran attended the University of Glasgow, where she graduated with a degree in History and Economic History in 1981. She first became politically active in the Glasgow University Labour Club in the late-1970s, where she was associated with Johann Lamont and Sarah Boyack. She held several posts in Labour student politics, including secretary and vice-chair of Glasgow University Labour Club, and chair and secretary of the Scottish Organisation of Labour Students. She was involved in the unsuccessful campaign to elect Hortensia Allende as Rector of Glasgow University in 1977.
She was a community worker, and then a lecturer in community education at the University of Strathclyde. She and her husband Rab live in Glasgow with their two sons. She was Mohammad Sarwar's election agent at Glasgow Govan for the 1997 general election.
Member of the Scottish ParliamentEdit
In 1999 Curran was elected to the new Scottish Parliament, and was promoted to a junior minister when Henry McLeish became First Minister and later became a member of the Scottish Executive. She served as convenor of the Social Inclusion committee, then was promoted to Deputy Minister for Social Justice. She then rose to become minister in that portfolio, which later changed to Minister for Communities, introducing the Homelessness (Scotland) Bill in September 2002. She held the position of Minister for Parliamentary Business from 2004 until 2007.
She was re-elected comfortably in 2003 and again in 2007. Given the Scottish Labour Party's losses in that later election, she was widely viewed as a popular potential successor to Jack McConnell as its leader, but decided not to stand against Wendy Alexander. Curran pledged her support to Iain Gray who was standing against Cathy Jamieson and Andy Kerr. Iain Gray was voted Scottish Labour Party Leader and appointed Curran to manage the party's 2011 election manifesto. She stood down as MSP for Glasgow Baillieston at the 2011 Scottish election.
2008 Glasgow East by-electionEdit
On 30 June 2008, David Marshall, MP for Glasgow East, resigned from the House of Commons on grounds of ill health, triggering a by-election. The Labour candidate for the by-election was to have been announced on 4 July, though the announcement was postponed when the likely choice, local councillor George Ryan, chose to withdraw from the nomination process. On 5 July, Curran placed herself forward for nomination on the Labour Party's shortlist and was confirmed as their candidate on 7 July. The by-election took place on 24 July 2008 and Curran was defeated by John Mason of the Scottish National Party by 365 votes. The swing from Labour was 22.54%.
Member of ParliamentEdit
At the 2010 general election, Curran regained Glasgow East for Labour from the Scottish National Party. After her electoral victory was announced, she walked out with the other candidates from the platform, refusing to make a speech whilst sharing the platform with the British National Party candidate. From 2010-11, she was Shadow Minister for Disabled People.
On 7 October 2011, in a Shadow Cabinet reshuffle, Labour Party leader Ed Miliband sacked Ann McKechin and appointed Curran as her replacement for Shadow Secretary of State for Scotland. Willie Bain, then-MP for Glasgow North East, also became Curran's new deputy as Shadow Scotland Office Minister, replacing Tom Greatrex.
For the year 2013–14, Curran was criticised for claiming more than £180,000 in expenses on top of her salary, including more than £19,000 on accommodation and nearly £16,000 on travel (as listed on the Independent Parliamentary Standards authority website).
At the 2015 general election, she lost her seat to Natalie McGarry of the Scottish National Party. This was a landslide defeat for Scottish Labour; who lost forty of the forty-one seats they were defending, and were reduced to a single MP at Westminster, with the SNP elected in 56 of Scotland's 59 seats. With many veteran Labour politicians losing their seats, including: then-Shadow Foreign Secretary Douglas Alexander and then-Scottish Labour Party Leader, Jim Murphy. Presenting speeches following their constituency's declaration, Curran declined to speak following the announcement of her own defeat.
- "Margaret Curran - wearing her heart on her sleeve". LabourList. 22 April 2013.
- "Curran leads attack on antisocial behaviour". Community Care. Mark Allen Group.[dead link]
- Homelessness etc. (Scotland) Bill Archived 25 December 2010 at the Wayback Machine
- James Maxwell (7 October 2011). "Margaret Curran will struggle against the SNP". New Statesman.
- "By-election looms after MP quits". BBC News. 30 June 2008. Retrieved 30 June 2008.
- "Campaigning starts in by-election". BBC News. 4 July 2008. Retrieved 4 July 2008.
- "Labour man quits by-election race". BBC News. 5 July 2008. Retrieved 5 July 2008.
- "Labour MSP joins by-election race". BBC Scotland. 5 July 2008. Retrieved 5 July 2008.
- "Curran takes on by-election fight". BBC News. 7 July 2008. Retrieved 7 July 2008.
- SNP stuns Labour in Glasgow East, BBC News, 25 July 2008
- Staff writer (12 October 2010). "Other shadow work and pensions ministers". BBC News. Retrieved 15 March 2018.
- Dailyrecord.co.uk (7 October 2011). "Ex-MSP Margaret Curran 'privileged' to have joined Labour's shadow cabinet". Daily Record. Scotland. Retrieved 15 March 2018.
- "Cabinet reshuffle: Miliband promotes Curran to Scotland job".
- Margaret Curran MSP Scottish Labour website
- Scottish Parliament biography
- Profile at Parliament of the United Kingdom
- Contributions in Parliament at Hansard 2010–present
- Voting record at Public Whip
- Record in Parliament at TheyWorkForYou
- Profile at Westminster Parliamentary Record
- Articles authored at Journalisted
|New constituency|| Member of Parliament for Glasgow Baillieston
|Parliament of the United Kingdom|
| Member of Parliament for Glasgow East
| Minister for Social Justice
|New office|| Minister for Communities
| Minister for Parliamentary Business
| Shadow Secretary of State for Scotland