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Reshuffle gossip points to ‘innocents’ and women

12 July 2013

8:50 AM

12 July 2013

8:50 AM

There’s just a week left of the Parliamentary term to go before MPs go back to their constituencies to mull that awkward pay rise over the summer. But one thing that’s keeping Tory MPs from relaxing is the possibility of a ministerial reshuffle next week. The word from reliable sources is that it will take place next Thursday with a sign-off meeting this Monday.

This is a minister-of-state-level reshuffle. The names of supposedly vulnerable ministers are circulating. They include housing minister Mark Prisk, energy minister Greg Barker, universities minister David Willetts, and employment minister Mark Hoban. They’re known as the ‘innocents’: ministers who are all thought to be doing a good job and who have not messed up but who are not considered likely to move up into the cabinet. One source says ‘if it’s not up, then it’s out’. This is a shame because it shows that the reshuffle is as much about giving new people a chance to shine as it is about policy stability. These ministers are responsible for major projects. In particular it would be slightly ironic to move Mark Prisk as housing minister given the emphasis Grant Shapps put on Labour’s indecision over who should be housing minister when he shadowed the portfolio.

This is also likely to be a reshuffle for women: Nicky Morgan is one name in particular worth keeping an eye on. She’s currently in the Whips’ office, but is tipped for greater things.

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  • Smithersjones2013

    [Yawn] I do hope this is not going to be another demonstration of how pussywhipped Cameron is…..

  • itdoesntaddup

    Willetts has utterly failed to tackle the problems of higher education: his desk should simply be handed to Gove. Prisk doesn’t seem to understand that making housing more affordable means letting bubble prices and rents in the private sector fall, rather than increasing rents in the public sector. Barker is a captive Green who should be replaced urgently along with Davey himself so we stand some chance of avoiding the lights going out. Only Mark Hoban can claim some success with his work on trying to make something of apprenticeships.

    Nicky Morgan…corporate M&A lawyer… what might she do? Sell RBS?

  • telemachus

    Do not like the philosophy of if not up- out
    However we could create a vacancy or 2 for up
    David Willetts is a sound chap and would do a good job at Health in place of Smug Hunt
    Educational Social Darwinist Gove should move on too. Mark Hogan would be good for that brief

    • HookesLaw

      I see another indication that Hunt in fact is doing OK at health. And Gove at education as well.

    • kyalami

      Gove might indeed move on, but not yet as the top post is not currently open.

      Hunt needs to shake a lot more waste out of the NHS before his next promotion.

      • Colonel Mustard

        And a few manslaughterers out of the bureaucratic jungle too.