Boris Johnson’s brutal cabinet reshuffle broke Westminster records, after the new prime minister sacked 11 ministers and six others resigned.
Over the course of Wednesday, the Tory party leader made a number of controversial dismissals, with even more contentious appointments making the headlines.
More than half of Theresa May’s old cabinet are gone – including Mr Johnson’s leadership rival Jeremy Hunt.
This morning, Mr Johnson’s new cabinet is meeting for the first time before he addresses the House of Commons
So who are the new arrivals?
Sajid Javid - Chancellor of the Exchequer
Mr Javid who finished fourth in the Conservative Party leadership race, leaves his most recent role as Home Secretary for the chancellorship. The Eurosceptic backed Remain in the 2016 EU referendum, but with a “heavy heart and no enthusiasm”. He has recently expressed his willingness for Britain to leave the EU without a deal.
Priti Patel - Home Secretary
A contentious choice, Ms Patel previously served as International Development Secretary from 2016 to 2017, but was forced to resign after she was found to have held unauthorised with the Israeli government. She is known for being a hardline Brexiteer who infamously once said she supported the death penalty. She is the first woman of ethnic minority descent to hold the office of Home Secretary.
Dominic Raab – Foreign Secretary and First Secretary of State
Another of Mr Johnson’s rivals in the Tory leadership contest, David Davis’s former chief of staff will now serve as both Foreign Secretary and de facto deputy prime minister. The former Breixt Secretary and staunch Brexiteer will play a critical role in determining the UK’s Brexit strategy and the running of Johnson’s government.
Stephen Barclay – retains role as Brexit Secretary
The North East Cambridgeshire MP has managed to keep hold of his position, which he took up in November 2018 following the resignation of Dominic Raab.The MP for North East Cambridgeshire, who voted to leave the EU in the 2016 referendum, supported Boris Johnson in the Tory leadership contest.
Ben Wallace – Defence Secretary
A British Army veteran and long-standing ally of Johnson, Mr Wallace was security minister at the Home Office before being handed this major promotion. The former Scots Guard captain will be charged with one of Mr Johnson’s biggest challenges in the early days of his premiership –helping to bring about the release of the British-flagged ship seized by Iran.
Amber Rudd – retains role as Work and Pensions Secretary and reinstated as Minister for Women and Equalities
The only major Jeremy Hunt-backer to survive the cabinet cull, The Hastings and Rye MP remains in her current post as DWP secretary. She has also been reinstated as Minister for Women and Equalities, having handed the position to Penny Mordant in April 2018. Ms Rudd is an open Remainer, but recently u-turned to back keeping a no-deal on the table.
Liz Truss – International Trade Secretary
A vocal backer of Mr Johnson, the former Chief Secretary to the Treasury had reportedly wanted the job of Business secretary but has accepted Liam Fox’s former job at the Department for International Trade. The South West Norfolk MP said she backs the idea of keeping no deal on the table in the run up to any Brexit negotiations.
Matt Hancock – retains role as Health Secretary
The youngest contender in the Tory leadership race, Matt Hancock, 40, quit the race after he came sixth in the first ballot of the party’s MPs. He later endorsed Boris Johnson as his preferred candidate. The MP for West Suffolk campaigned for Remain in the EU referendum, but has since backed Theresa May’s Brexit plan.
Michael Gove – Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster
A protagonist of the Vote Leave campaign, the former environment secretary was a key advocate of Mrs May’s Brexit deal but will now take charge of no deal preparations. The appointment marks an end to tensions between Mr Gove and his new prime minister, after he scuppered Mr Johnson’s Tory leadership hopes i 2016.
Theresa Villiers – Environment Secretary
The former Northern Ireland secretary has backed Mr Johnson from the start, saying he would offer people “some hope and excitement about what politics can deliver for them”. The MP for Chipping Barnet has also served as transport minister and shadow chief secretary to the Treasury. She has spoken out against the backstop plan and said she would be prepared to back a no-deal Brexit.
Gavin Williamson – Education Secretary
The former defence secretary was sacked by Theresa May following a row over the leaking of information from the National Security Council. The South Staffordshire MP, who backed remain in the EU referendum, helped run Boris Johnson’s campaign in the first phase of the Tory leadership contest.
Nicky Morgan – Culture Secretary
Known as one of the most powerful and influential female politicians in Parliament, the former chair of the Commons Treasury select committee has become a key figure in attempts to forge a compromise with Tory Brexiteers. The Loughborough MP fell out spectacularly with Mrs May during a row in which she criticised the cost of a pair of leather trousers worn by the then prime minister.
Andrea Leadsom – Business Secretary
The ardent Brexiteer is known as one of the Conservatives’ most prominent female politicians. The MP for South Northamptonshire made the final two alongside Theresa May in the 2016 Tory leadership race, but pulled out of the contest following an interview in which she suggested being a mother made her a better candidate.
Robert Jenrick – Housing Secretary
Former treasury minister Robert Jenrick voted Remain in the EU referendum but said Mr Johnson was the only one who could save the Tory party from an “existential threat”. He was elected as MP for Newark in a by-election in June 2014 after Patrick Mercer resigned in disgrace.
Robert Buckland – Lord Chancellor and Justice Secretary
The former solicitor general moved to be prisons minister in the justice department in May 2019. Supporting Mr Johnson in the leadership race, he described him as a “moderate, open-minded, one-nation Conservative”, claiming he is “what we need now”. The South Swindon MP campaigned for Remain, but said it was important to deliver on the result of the EU referendum. However, he has previously spoken out against a no-deal Brexit and stressed the need for compromise.
Alok Sharma – International Development Secretary
The former employment minister backed Mr Johnson for prime minister, saying he was the only candidate who could deliver on Brexit, a domestic policy agenda and win a general election against Nigel Farage and Jeremy Corbyn. The MP for Reading West campaigned for Remain but said he would be prepared to leave with no deal if it proved impossible to negotiate a new one before 31 October.
Grant Shapps – Transport Secretary
The former international development minister was once seen as a high-flyer in the Tory party until he resigned following allegations he ignored warnings about bullying when he was party co-chairman. The MP for Welwyn Hatfield and former Remainer has said he is backing Brexit “as hard as you like”.
Alun Cairns – retains role as Welsh Secretary
The MP for the Vale of Glamorgan is another survivor of Mr Johnson’s “night of the blonde knives”. The Welsh assembly member supported Boris Johnson for the leadership, saying he was the best person to drive a “bold and ambitious plan” with Brussels. He has also said the UK must be prepared to leave without a deal.
Julian Smith – Northern Ireland Secretary
The former chief whip had a successful career as an entrepreneur before entering Parliament. The MP for Skipton and Ripon accused ministers in Theresa May’s cabinet of trying to undermine the prime minister, and said has said the UK would “inevitably” have to accept a closer relationship with the EU after Brexit.
Alister Jack – Scottish Secretary
The MP for Dumfries and Galloway in 2017 and has supported what he calls “a successful Brexit for Scotland”. The dairy farmer and tent hire company-founder was appointed assistant government whip in February 2019. His constituency includes the busiest ferry-port serving Northern Ireland and he has said he would like to see an end date to the backstop proposal.
Baroness Evans of Bowes Park – retains role as Leader of the House of Lords
Baroness Evans retains her role as Lords Leader to which she was appointed in 2016. The former deputy director of the centre-right Policy Exchange think-tank was ennobled by David Cameron in 2014.
Geoffrey Cox – retains role as Attorney General
The chief legal adviser to the Crown said he was “privileged” to be asked to stay in post. The Brexit-supporter and MP for Torridge and West Devon told cabinet colleagues last month that remaining in the backstop could be like remaining “in the first circle of hell”.
Rishi Sunak – Chief Secretary to the Treasury
Brexiteer rising star Rishi Sunak will be Sajid Javid’s deputy at the Treasury. The Richmond MP supported Leave in the EU referendum and was a vocal backer of Mr Johnson in the leadership campaign
James Cleverly – Minister without portfolio and Conservative Party chairman
The MP for Braintree has tipped for high office for some time, having served as Conservative deputy chairman for 18 months and as a junior Brexit minister since April.Despite supporting Theresa May’s Withdrawal Agreement until the bitter end, he is popular with Brexiteers and is close to Boris Johnson, having served in the London Assembly while he was mayor.
Jacob Rees-Mogg – Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons
The ERG chairman and arch-Brexiteer takes up his first cabinet role. Known for being a frequent thorn in Theresa May‘s side, he described the new prime minister as “incredibly businesslike and ready to crack on and deliver for the country”.
Esther McVey – Minister for Housing, Communities and Local Government
The MP for Tatton finished last in the bid for the Tory leadership, but now takes over from Kit Malthouse in the Department for Housing, Communities and Local Government. Ms McVey had a career in TV before politics and recently made headlines over an alleged spat with Lorraine Kelly.
Brandon Lewis – Home Office minister, and will also attend Cabinet
The former Minister of State for Immigration most recently served as Minister Without a Portfolio. The MP for Great Yarmouth made a short speech before Mr Johnson was named as new Tory leader.
Jo Johnson – Minister at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy and the Department for Education, and he will also attend Cabinet
The prime minister’s younger brother resigned from government last year over Theresa May’s proposed Brexit deal. The Orpington MP, who previously served as Minister of State for Transport, talked of disillusionment with the government’s Brexit strategy and called for a fresh vote with an option to remain.
Oliver Dowden – Paymaster General and Minister for the Cabinet Office
The former Parliamentary Secretary at the Cabinet Office has been MP for Hertsmere since May 2015. Prior to his selection as Conservative candidate for Hertsmere, he worked as a special adviser, and David Cameron’s deputy chief of staff. He voted to remain in the EU referendum.
Kwasi Kwarteng – Minister at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, and he will also attend Cabinet
The hardline Brexiteer and former under-secretary of state at the Brexit department told an academic event last month that a no-deal Brexit “won’t have any long-term impact on growth” in the UK.sought The Waltham Forest MP sought to quell fears about Britain crashing out of the EU without a deal, saying it “is not a world war”.
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