As touring the blogosphere tonight, I note that Carwyn Jones is having lots of advice about who to appoint to his first Cabinet. So I don't see why I shouldn't join in - at least in general terms. The first requirement will be for the new Leader to put his stamp on things by springing a surprise or two - but not easy when you think about it. He will also have to disappoint someone that's seen as his friend. Successful leaders have to be seen as tough, and willing to take decisions that are not welcome in their own kitchen. I'm assuming that Plaid Ministers will all stay put.
Some long standing Ministers will probably be asked to leave the Cabinet, if they haven't decided to go anyway. I'd expect Andrew Davies, Jane Hutt and Brian Gibbons to fall into this category - and maybe the retiring Jane Davidson (but Carwyn may feel he cannot afford to lose her and say that she's going in the summer - dangling a carrot in front of Deputy Ministers). He will probably bring in his campaign manager and leadership opponents, though he might be tempted to offer Huw no more than a Deputy role. (Probably not though). Everyone expects promotion for best mate, John Griffiths - but this could be where Carwyn demonstrates his ruthless side! (But again, probably not). Maybe he'll repeatt he trick of an AM as Counsel General. This would leave room for the splendid Carl Sargeant, as a nod in the direction of North Wales. I should also make reference to Carl's outstanding ability - or I'll have Aneurin Glyndwr targeting me.
Beyond the above, he must do something 'different' to make a mark - so everyone else will come from the backbenches - and I just do not know the AMs elected in 2007 well enough. Perhaps he will just go for Lesley Griffiths or the media ever present Alun Davies, but if he does, its all so predictable. He's got to come up with something to surprise us - Carl as Minister for Sport perhaps. Perhaps Jane Davidson will have to go after all. Only problem with all this is that its so predictable. Go on, surprise us First Minister (elect). Surely there'll be one surprise.