Mike O'Brien (British politician)
||This article includes a list of references, but its sources remain unclear because it has insufficient inline citations. (January 2010)|
|The Right Honourable
|Minister of State for Health Services|
8 June 2009 – 11 May 2010
|Prime Minister||Gordon Brown|
|Preceded by||Ben Bradshaw|
|Succeeded by||Simon Burns|
|Minister of State for Energy|
5 October 2008 – 8 June 2009
|Prime Minister||Gordon Brown|
|Preceded by||New Department|
|Succeeded by||Joan Ruddock|
|Minister of State for Work and Pensions|
28 June 2007 – 5 October 2008
|Preceded by||John Hutton|
|Succeeded by||Rosie Winterton|
|Solicitor General for England and Wales|
11 May 2005 – 28 June 2007
|Prime Minister||Tony Blair
|Preceded by||Harriet Harman|
|Succeeded by||Vera Baird|
|Member of Parliament
for North Warwickshire
9 April 1992 – 6 May 2010
|Preceded by||Francis Maude|
|Succeeded by||Daniel Byles|
19 June 1954 |
Worcester, England, UK
|Spouse(s)||Alison Joy Munro|
|Alma mater||North Staffordshire Polytechnic|
Michael O'Brien QC (born 19 June 1954) is a British former Labour Party politician who was the Member of Parliament (MP) for North Warwickshire from 1992 to 2010. In the May 2010 general election, he lost his North Warwickshire constituency to Dan Byles, the Conservative Party candidate.
O'Brien was re-selected as Labour's candidate in North Warwickshire for the 2015 General Election in June 2013.
O'Brien attended a Roman Catholic primary school, St George's[where?] and later attended Blessed Edward Oldcorne School (Worcester). He studied for a BA in History and Politics at North Staffordshire Polytechnic, then gained a PGCE. From 1977-80, he was a trainee solicitor, then trained as a teacher from 1980-1. He lectured in Business Law at Colchester College of Further and Higher Education from 1981-87. From 1987-92, he practised as a solicitor specialising in criminal law including handling cases of murder and City fraud and acted for a major defendant in the Knightsbridge Security Deposit robbery. He became a Queen's Counsel in 2007.
O'Brien contested Ruislip Northwood in 1983, and North Warwickshire in 1987. He was elected as the Member of Parliament for the West Midlands constituency of North Warwickshire at the 1992 general election, defeating the Conservative incumbent Francis Maude, and lost his seat to the Conservative candidate at the 2010 general election. He served on the Home Affairs Select Committee from November 1992 to May 1993 focusing on reports on Youth Justice and the defence of provocation in murder cases involving a spouse. In May 1993 he became the first Labour Parliamentary Adviser to the Police Federation in 20 years and subsequently transferred to the Treasury Select Committee where he worked on a report into the collapse of Barings Bank and other reports on City Fraud and Independence of the Bank of England.
He served as Immigration Minister in the Home Office from 1997–2001. He developed procedures to deal with suspected terrorists at the Special Immigration Appeals Commission. He also took through major reforms in the Immigration and Asylum Act, including introducing fines for hauliers found to have illegal migrants in their lorry, whether or not the haulier knew of their presence. From May 1999 he became the Minister for Constitutional Affairs, taking through the Commons the Freedom of Information Act, the Political Parties, Elections and Referendums Act 2000, two Representation of the People Acts and introducing a White Paper on Alcohol Licensing Reform. As Minister responsible for Race Relations he developed the Race Relations (Amendment) Act 2000 which placed obligations on all public bodies to promote good race relations. He also worked to develop closer links between the Government and the Muslim community, something he continued to work on over the next decade, particularly after 9/11.
Then at the Foreign Office from 2002 to 2003 he was Minister for the Middle East. He went to Libya to hold the first meeting of a British Minister with Muammar al-Gaddafi which opened the way to better relations with the West and cooperation on ending controversial Libyan weapons research programmes. He was the first Western Minister into Baghdad after the Iraq War and worked on relationships with Iran, Syria and Afghanistan during this period. He was then appointed Minister of State for Trade and Industry, dealing with talks with the WTO as part of the Doha Round and helping to write the 2004 Trade White Paper. He moved to become Minister of State for E-commerce, Energy & Competitiveness at the Department of Trade and Industry on 9 September 2004. After the 2005 General Election he replaced Harriet Harman as Solicitor General for England and Wales. On 29 June 2007 he moved to be the Minister of State for Pension Reform in the Department for Work and Pensions under Secretary of State Peter Hain. Referring to the long running Pensions Action Group campaign and speaking on the BBC Radio 4 Moneybox programme on the day compensation was announced, pensions expert Ros Altmann, credited Peter Hain and O'Brien with "having been very different to deal with than their predecessors and ... willing and eager to engage and find a way to sort this out." The Pensions Act 2008 completed its major stages whilst O' Brien was minister and received Royal Assent in November 2008.
On 5 October 2008, he moved to be Minister of State for Energy in order to help create the new Department of Energy and Climate Change. He took through Parliament two Energy Acts making significant reforms to take account of the Climate Change debate and to enable the building of new nuclear power stations. In June 2009 he became the Minister of State for Health. As well as taking through administrative reforms of the NHS in two Acts of Parliament, he negotiated a settlement of compensation for the victims of Thalidomide and introduced new rights for current and former service personnel injured in the line of duty to get priority treatment from the NHS. In the 2010 general election O'Brien lost North Warwickshire to Dan Byles (Conservative) by 54 votes.
- "Mike O'Brien Former Labour MP for North Warwickshire". Theyworkforyou.com. Retrieved 2011-01-10.
- Ryan Merriman (11 June 2013). "Mike O'Brien to take on Dan Byles". Nuneaton News. Retrieved 8 July 2013.
- "No5 Chambers:Mike O'Brien:Crime". www.no5.com. Retrieved 8 July 2013.
- "Mike O’Brien - Administrative & Public Law". www.no5.com. Retrieved 8 July 2013.
- "MONEY BOX transcript page 4". BBC. 7 December 2007. Retrieved 25 April 2010.
- "Pensions Act 2008". epolitics. Retrieved 10 January 2010.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Mike O'Brien (UK politician).|
- Official site[dead link]
- Twitter stream
- Department for Work and Pensions - Official Biography[dead link]
- Guardian Unlimited Politics - Ask Aristotle: Michael O'Brien MP
- TheyWorkForYou.com - Mike O'Brien MP
- BBC Politics page[dead link]
- Hansard 1803–2005: contributions in Parliament by Mike O'Brien
- Pension reform in July 2007
- Wave Hub plan in Cornwall in November 2004
- UK embracing E-commerce in November 2004
- Meeting Colonel Gaddafi in August 2002
- 24 hour drinking in May 2001
- Accusing Home Office of racism in April 2000
- Accusing the Fire Service of racism in September 1999
|Parliament of the United Kingdom|
|Member of Parliament
for North Warwickshire
|Solicitor General for England and Wales
|Minister of State for Work and Pensions
|Minister of State for Energy
2008 - 2009
|Minister for Health Services
2009 - 2010