(redirected from cabinet minister)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Encyclopedia.


The counsel or group of advisers of a king or other chief executive of a government. A group of individuals who advise the president of the United States.

The president's cabinet was created by custom and tradition and was instituted by the first president. The heads of each of the executive departments of the government, including the Secretary of State, the secretary of the treasury, the secretary of defense, the attorney general, the secretary of the interior, the secretary of agriculture, the secretary of commerce, the secretary of labor, the secretary of health and human services, the secretary of education, the secretary of housing and urban development, and the secretary of transportation, comprise the cabinet.


Executive Branch.

See: agency, bench, board, body, chamber, commission, committee


in the constitutional law of the UK, as a result of various conventions, the executive part of the British government. Beginning as a group of special advisers to the crown, the lack of interest shown by monarchs in the 18th century meant that the Crown took little part in their deliberations. Parliament was concerned about this practice, and as early as the Act of Settlement of 1700 had tried to restrain the practice. Nonetheless, the Reform Act of 1832, extending the franchise, meant that the support of the House of Commons was ever more important. Accordingly, whoever had support there could have the direct link to the Crown, which was the essence of the Cabinet. The acceptance of the limited role of monarchy and the increase in representation have increased the status of the Cabinet so that it is now effectively the executive branch of government answerable to Parliament and requiring to legislate through Parliament with the Crown but in practical day-to-day matters being able to carry through all business subject to the duty of doing so in accordance with the policy of Parliament. It is entirely distinct from the Privy Council, whose meetings take precedence, but naturally many of the same individuals sit on both. Members of the Cabinet are usually ministers and are appointed by the Crown on the recommendation of the Prime Minister. There are usually about 20 members, and the existence of the Cabinet, although a matter of convention, has been noticed in legislation and judicial decision. It has a secretariat, and in modern times it keeps records, including minutes. Members subscribe to a doctrine of collective responsibility under which dissension in Cabinet is silenced after a decision, and all abide and promote that course. The Cabinet is responsible as a whole to Parliament under this doctrine.

CABINET. Certain officers who taken collectively make a board; as, the president's, cabinet, which is usually composed of the secretary of state, secretary of the treasury, the attorney general, and some others.
     2. These officers are the advisers of the president.

References in periodicals archive ?
Since the past many days her husband has been saying that a cabinet minister used to regularly talk to his wife over the telephone.
Soon after Vivekananda Reddy walked out of his nephew's residence, few supporters of Jagan Mohan Reddy agitated against the cabinet minister, urging him to step down from his post.
Twice he occupied the steps of the Manitoba Legislature: once to draw attention to Thompson's lack of self-government and again to protest a pay hike for cabinet ministers while minimum wage remained stagnant.
The former Northern Ireland Secretary has already said she'll quit as Cabinet Minister to concentrate on a new role with schoolchildren in Ulster.
The cabinet minister said Saudi Arabia and Iran have expressed support for convening such a ministerial meeting to consider the situation resulting from the nuclear tests which led to economic sanctions by the United States, Japan and other industrialized countries.
Shadow policing minister David Hanson said yesterday: "This is rank hypocrisy from a Tory Cabinet Minister.
Lord Gilmour, who passed away following a short illness, was the first Cabinet Minister to be sacked by Margaret Thatcher.
Paul Boateng, the new Chief Secretary to the Treasury, is Britain's first black Cabinet Minister, according to the House of Commons Information Office.
Nigel Hart - who claims to have had a passionate sexual affair with the former Tory Cabinet minister - told a Sunday newspaper he had the virus which leads to AIDS.
WE only know Tory Cabinet minister Andrew Mitchell was foul-mouthed to police and dismissed them as "plebs" because someone was so appalled they blew the whistle.
Parliamentary Affairs Minister Indira Hridayesh, who is the only cabinet minister to get portfolio, also said Congress will win the election of speaker comfortably.
SUPERSTAR Michael Jackson visited the Palace of Westminster yesterday for a sightseeing trip, including a meeting with the Lord Chancellor, Lord Irvine, and a birthday party with a Cabinet minister.