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Geoff Hoon's appointment as Europe minister hasn't really raised the profile of the job. And have the MEPs finally tired of trekking to Strasbourg?

By Manneken Pis   July 2006

Who’d be a Europe minister?

For an hour or two on the day of Blair’s last cabinet reshuffle, it seemed that Europe might finally be gaining a bigger profile. Geoff Hoon, the new minister for Europe, emerged from Downing Street under the impression he had been given a cabinet job. That idea was quickly quashed by No 10, which insisted that Hoon had the same status as his predecessor, Douglas Alexander: no formal cabinet seat but the right to attend its meetings. For Hoon, who was moving from a cabinet post, that meant a demotion—and going back to a…

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