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Re-shuffle Risks

Re-shuffle Risks

🕔25.Jul 2014

Former Labour Councillor Jilly Bermingham looks at what’s behind Cameron’s Cabinet changes. 

As we enter the parliamentary recess for the Summer we are left, as a final act, courtesy of Mr Cameron, with a confusing and potentially dangerous cabinet reshuffle.

The PR team from No. 10 trailered and hyped it up like a blockbuster film that on opening night left the critics reeling.

Whatever the party in power I want a strong cabinet to lead our country, they are there to represent everyone, and the decisions they make will affect all of us.

The Prime Minister obviously sat in front of a blank piece of paper with just one thought. Who can I sack to make way for more women to show that I am a man of the people? A decision which led to the most liberal, intelligent and experienced of the cabinet being shown the door.

What should the Prime Minister do when faced with a Justice Secretary, Chris Grayling MP who has alienated the whole of the Bar, never been a practising lawyer and has proved he has no intention of learning and an Attorney General, Dominic Grieve MP, who is both respected and experienced and independent minded enough to ensure the Government is kept on track. Of course he makes the decision to not only replace the Attorney General but replace him with Jeremy Wright MP, a barrister who hasn’t practised for 9 years. He doesn’t even have the excuse that he was promoting a woman.

The appointment of the selected women to the Cabinet included Esther McVey, she still serves under Ian Duncan Smith in the same position as before but now she is allowed to sit at the cabinet table with the real Cabinet Ministers. In shunting Michael Gove MP to the whips office Nicky Morgan MP has been promoted. In her short time in Parliament she has voted and spoken against equal marriage, alienating a lot of the young people she will be representing.

Now there is a very disturbing fact about what these two promoted women have in common? They have both served less than one Parliament, it doesn’t matter how intelligent you are or whether you are male or female, until you have served at least two terms you have no knowledge of the way Westminster itself works, without experience there is a weakness in your ability to get the best out of your department.

Maybe those now in office will spend their summers wisely, studying their departments and in the case of Jeremy Wright seeking advice from his predecessor.

Jilly Bermingham is a former Labour Councillor, now an Alderman spreading the word as Constituency and Ward Secretary.

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