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Denis Healey

(b. 1917)


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(1917– )

British politician, deputy leader of the Labour Party (1980–83). He was created a life peer in 1992.

Healey served in the army in World War II and was then secretary of the International Department of the Labour Party (1945–52), gaining early experience in foreign affairs. He was elected MP for Leeds, South-East in 1952 (Leeds, East from 1955), and was on the executive of the Fabian Society (1956–61). Under Harold Wilson he was defence secretary (1964–70) and then opposition spokesman on foreign affairs (1970–72) and Treasury matters (1971–74). After Wilson's retirement, Healey, a moderate, failed three times to win the party leadership (in 1976, 1980, and 1983). As Chancellor of the Exchequer (1974–79), he presented a record number of budgets. With Labour again in opposition, Healey was spokesman on Treasury matters (1979–81) and foreign affairs (1981–87). He left the shadow cabinet in 1987 and published an autobiography, The Time of My Life, in 1989.

Subjects: Politics.


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