Shadow Cabinet (Scottish Parliament)

Unlike the Westminster arrangement where there is an 'Official Opposition' to the government of the day, there is no such thing as an 'official' opposition to the Scottish Government. Instead, all parties that are not in government are merely 'opposition parties'. With the current Scottish Government being Scottish National Party (SNP), the four other main parties are all opposition parties and each will have a Shadow Cabinet composed of Members of the Scottish Parliament (MSPs) with a responsibility to shadow a government minister or area of government.

Parties are allowed to choose how their spokespersons are referred to.[1] Named party spokespeople are not all Members of the Scottish Parliament.

Conservative Shadow Cabinet

As announced on 28 June 2017.[2]

  • Leader: The Rt Hon. Ruth Davidson MSP
  • Deputy Leader & Shadow Cabinet Secretary for Europe and External Affairs : Jackson Carlaw MSP
  • Chief Whip & Business Manager, Spokesperson for the Low Carbon Economy: Maurice Golden MSP
  • Shadow Cabinet Secretary for Finance: Murdo Fraser MSP
  • Shadow Cabinet Secretary for the Economy, Jobs & Fair Work: Dean Lockhart MSP
  • Shadow Cabinet Secretary for Health & Sport: Miles Briggs MSP
  • Shadow Cabinet Secretary for Education & Skills: Liz Smith MSP
  • Shadow Cabinet Secretary for Communities, Social Security, the Constitution & Equalities: Adam Tomkins MSP
  • Shadow Cabinet Secretary for Justice: Liam Kerr MSP
  • Shadow Cabinet Secretary for the Rural Economy & Connectivity: Peter Chapman MSP
  • Shadow Cabinet Secretary for the Environment, Climate Change & Land Reform, 2021 Policy Coordinator: Donald Cameron MSP
  • Shadow Cabinet Secretary for Culture and Tourism: Rachael Hamilton MSP

Labour Shadow Cabinet

The Scottish Labour front-bench team was announced on 19 December 2017.[3] There was a reshuffle of the cabinet on 4 October 2018, which saw Anas Sarwar leave the position of Secretary for Health & Sport, and Jackie Baillie leave her position as Secretary for Economy, Jobs & Fair Work.[4][5] There was another reshuffle following the return of Sarah Boyack to the Scottish Parliament in September 2019.[6]

Scottish Greens Shadow Cabinet

As announced on 23 May 2016[7]

Liberal Democrat Shadow Cabinet

As announced on 28 May 2016:[8]

  • Leader & Finance Spokesperson: Willie Rennie MSP
  • Deputy Leader: The Rt. Hon. Alistair Carmichael MP
  • Education & Sports Spokesperson: Tavish Scott MSP
  • Justice & Energy Spokesperson: Liam McArthur MSP
  • Rural Affairs Spokesperson & Business Manager: Mike Rumbles MSP
  • Health Spokesperson: Alex Cole-Hamilton MSP
  • Economy Spokesperson: Cllr Carolyn Caddick
  • Culture Spokesperson: Cllr Eileen McCartin
  • Social Security Spokesperson: Cllr Karen Clark
  • Chairperson of 2017 Scottish Local Election Campaign: Katy Gordon
  • Children's Spokesperson & Party Convener: Sheila Thomson
  • Social Security Spokesperson & Party Treasurer: Caron Lindsay
  • Environment Spokesperson: Christine Jardine


  1. "Scottish Parliament Fact sheet: Party Spokespersons" (PDF). 31 May 2016. Retrieved 23 June 2016.
  2. "Ruth Davidson unveils reshuffled Scottish Tory shadow cabinet|". Liam Kirkaldy |. 28 June 2017. Retrieved 11 January 2018.
  3. "New Scottish shadow cabinet in full | LabourList". LabourList | Labour's biggest independent grassroots e-network. 19 December 2017. Retrieved 4 January 2018.
  4. "Sarwar and Baillie out in Labour reshuffle". BBC News. 4 October 2018. Retrieved 4 October 2018.
  5. Johnson, Simon (4 October 2018). "Scottish Labour leader sacks two leading moderate MSPs in 'chaotic' reshuffle". The Telegraph. ISSN 0307-1235. Retrieved 4 October 2018.
  6. "Scottish Labour reshuffle as Sarah Boyack returns to frontline politics". Retrieved 23 October 2019.
  7. "Scottish Greens announce portfolios of new Holyrood group". Herald Scotland. 22 May 2016. Retrieved 24 November 2017.
  8. "Willie Rennie announces Scottish Lib Dem leadership team". STV News. 28 May 2016. Retrieved 24 November 2017.
  • Conservative Shadow Cabinet -
  • Labour Shadow Cabinet -
  • Scottish Greens Spokespeople -
  • Lib Dem Spokespeople -
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