July 24, 2019
The new prime minister is in Downing Street assembling his top team.
Sajid Javid, Priti Patel And Dominic Raab Get Top Jobs In Boris Johnsons Cabinet
Sajid Javid has been handed the plum post of chancellor in new prime minister Boris Johnson’s government.
The former home secretary was Johnson’s first appointment as he began his cabinet reshuffle.
He will be replaced at the Home Office by hard Brexiteer Priti Patel, returning to the cabinet having been forced to resign in 2017 for holding unofficial and unsanctioned meetings with senior Israeli political figures.
Javid was widely tipped for the post of chancellor but Patel, a longstanding ally of Johnson, will prove to be a more controversial appointment, having previously expressed ultra-right wing views such as backing the death penalty.
Fellow Brexiteer Dominic Raab was appointed foreign secretary to replace Jeremy Hunt, who quit after being offered an inferior post.
Raab was also handed the title of first secretary of state, meaning he will deputise for Johnson when he is on holiday, or away during prime minister’s questions.
Michael Gove, Johnson’s old Vote Leave partner and 2016 leadership race nemesis, was appointed chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, previously held by May’s number two David Lidington.
One of Johnson’s most longstanding supporters, Ben Wallace, was promoted from security minister to defence secretary to replace Penny Mordaunt, who was surprisingly sacked from the cabinet after she backed Hunt in the Tory leadership race.
Brexit Secretary Stephen Barclay kept his job on a brutal evening when 17 of his colleagues, including Hunt, Mordaunt, and former trade secretary Liam Fox were sacked or quit the cabinet.
Other high profile departures included the much-criticised former transport secretary Chris Grayling and ex-business secretary Greg Clark, who is opposed to a no-deal Brexit.
Liz Truss, an early backer of Johnson who had been angling for the chancellor job, was handed Fox’s role as international trade secretary.
She praised the “excellent” appointments of Javid, Patel and Raab to the cabinet’s top jobs.
Moderate MPs expressed surprise at the extent to which Johnson wielded the knife.
Many were calling for Hunt to be kept in a senior role after running a widely praised leadership campaign, but he quit as foreign secretary after Johnson tried to offer him another job.
One MP told HuffPost UK the government was “losing some good people”, while another said simply “oh my goodness”.
A Brexiteer MP however said “big change requires big changes”.
Another Tory source meanwhile described Johnson’s reshuffle as “unexpectedly harsh and risky” but questioned whether it was designed to show the EU he was serious about a no-deal Brexit.
The Tory source described Raab in particular as a “spooky stooge for the EU”.
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