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  • Jim Hacker
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  • Hacker was an academic political researcher, polytechnic lecturer, and editor of a newspaper, Reform, and entered Parliament circa 1961. He continued with at least some of these jobs while holding the office of Member of Parliament for Birmingham East. Yes, Prime Minister follows on from this, with Hacker and Sir Humphrey raised to the highest levels in British government: Prime Minister and Cabinet Secretary respectively. Bernard remains Hacker's principal private secretary throughout.
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  • Hacker was an academic political researcher, polytechnic lecturer, and editor of a newspaper, Reform, and entered Parliament circa 1961. He continued with at least some of these jobs while holding the office of Member of Parliament for Birmingham East. For the first twenty years of his political career, Hacker was a member of the Opposition, and he served as Shadow Minister of Agriculture from 1974 on. In 1980, he served as the head of the unsuccessful party leadership campaign of Martin Walker; the winner of this campaign, Herbert Attwell, later went on to win the general election in 1981, and thereby became the UK's new prime minister. Hacker was nervous that Attwell would pass him over for a Cabinet post as an act of revenge for running Walker's campaign against him, but Attwell appointed Hacker to the cabinet as minister for the (fictitious) Department of Administrative Affairs. At least one news commentator of the time speculated that the appointment was actually an act of revenge, as the DAA had a reputation as "a political graveyard" that could end Hacker's career. In Yes Minister, Hacker is joined by the ministry's Permanent Secretary, Sir Humphrey Appleby, who as a senior civil servant tries to control the ministry and the minister himself, and also by his Principal Private Secretary, Bernard Woolley. Hacker received his degree, a third, from the London School of Economics, and is frequently derided for this by the Oxford-educated Sir Humphrey. He and his wife, Annie, have one daughter, Lucy, a sociology student at the University of Sussex who plays a major role in the first series episode "The Right to Know". Hacker gains an honorary doctorate from Baillie College, Oxford (a possible reference to Balliol College), in the second series episode "Doing the Honours". During the Christmas special episode, "Party Games", he is Party Chair, which gives him the opportunity — with the help of Sir Humphrey and other civil servants acting in their own interests — to become Prime Minister in an episode broadcast in 1985 (but according to the book adaptation, set in 1984). Yes, Prime Minister follows on from this, with Hacker and Sir Humphrey raised to the highest levels in British government: Prime Minister and Cabinet Secretary respectively. Bernard remains Hacker's principal private secretary throughout. An obituary for Hacker, written by his creators, Antony Jay and Jonathan Lynn, appears in Politico's Book of the Dead. The entry gives Hacker the same dates of birth and death as Paul Eddington, the actor who portrayed him. (These dates make Hacker 53 at the time of broadcast of the episode "Open Government", in which the character was described by a journalist as "in his late forties": either the episode is set a few years earlier, the journalist was mistaken, or Hacker had been lying about his age.) Although the series itself ends with Hacker still Prime Minister, this obituary mentions his later career as a member of the House of Lords. After his death, a college is named after him (Hacker College, Oxford).