Lobbying Target - Yvette Cooper, chief secretary to the Treasury

As Labour continues to debate its future, Yvette Cooper is the latest MP to be talked up by party members as the answer to their problems.

Potential leader? 'Blair babe' Cooper
Potential leader? 'Blair babe' Cooper

- Ten second biography

The wife of children's secretary Ed Balls, Cooper was one of the 101 'Blair babes' to enter the Commons in 1997. She has enjoyed a rapid rise up the ministerial ladder and was made housing minister (attending cabinet) in June 2007. She moved to the Treasury in January 2008.

- What is her background?

Cooper was educated at comprehensive school, before going on to Oxford and following a classic new Labour trajectory: a year at Harvard as a Kennedy scholar, then economic researcher for John Smith when he was shadow chancellor. In 1995 she became the economics correspondent at The Independent.

- Where does she sit politically?

Back in 1998 Cooper was described in The Sunday Times as the 'dazzling star of the Blairite nomenklatura'. But Labour insiders say she shares the Brownite credentials of her husband, being driven by a passionate desire for social justice and speaking angrily of social exclusion.

- Why she is a woman to watch

Many Labour Party members believe she has what it takes to rejuvenate the party as its next leader. A recent article on the LabourHome website stated: 'Yvette Cooper will inject a much-needed excitement into the political arena.' Many readers agreed.

- Something you might not know

Cooper's father is a former chairman of the British Nuclear Industry Forum.

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