October 23, 2021, 11:06

    Johnson ditches failures then appoints more as reshuffle makes worst team in Britain

    Johnson ditches failures then appoints more as reshuffle makes worst team in Britain

    Boris Johnson finally unveiled his new Cabinet tonight just hours after ordering Tory MPs not to vote against axing the Universal Credit cut for six million Brits.

    The Prime Minister sacked hapless Education Secretary Gavin Williamson and demoted slippery Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab to Justice Secretary.

    He replaced Mr Williamson with Nadhim Zadhawi, a multi-millionaire Tory who has said poor parents “actually prefer” to pay a “modest sum” for their kids school meals.

    Ex-trade secretary Liz Truss, who has failed to make any headway on a trade deal with the United States, was promoted to Britain’s top foreign job.

    What do you think of the reshuffle? Have your say in the comment section

    Bumbling Gavin WIlliamson is gone
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    AFP via Getty Images)

    Robert Jenrick has been given his marching orders
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    PA)

    But shortly before crafting his new top team the PM instructed Tory MPs to abstain on a Labour bid to stop a swingeing £20-a-week cut to UC and Working Tax Credit.

    The symbolic vote passed but Mr Johnson was planning to press ahead next month with the cut, worth £1,040 a year, pushing millions of hard-working families to the brink.

    Yet unlike UC claimants, 40% of whom are in work, the ministers who lost their jobs will have a generous financial cushion equivalent to three months’ salary.

    A trio of sacked ministers – Mr Williamson, ex-Justice Secretary Robert Buckland and ex-Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick are each in line for a £17,000 pay-out.

    Popular Robert Buckland may have been removed to make way for demoted Dominic Raab
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    PA)

    Former I'm A Celeb contestant Nadine Dorries comes in for Culture, Media and Sport
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    PA)

    Tory co-chair Amanda Milling, who also lost her job, is not thought to qualify for the golden goodbye as she was sacked from a party role.

    Labour accused the Government of “warped” priorities by focusing on a reshuffle rather than cancelling their cut.

    Shadow work and pensions secretary Johnny Reynolds added: “That they’re giving pay-offs to those they do not deem competent enough to be in Government while cutting the incomes of millions is an insult to hard working people.”

    The UC uplift has been in place since April 2020 but is now being removed, despite warnings from opposition parties, unions, landlords, debt charities, mortgage lenders and some Tory MPs.

    Priti Patel is staying, somehow
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    REUTERS)

    Liz Truss has been appointed as the newFforeign Secretary
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    Getty Images)

    Tory ex-Work and Pensions minister Stephen Crabb said Tories should be “standing on the side of” supermarket workers, cleaners and care workers – many of whom claim UC to top up poverty wages.

    Mr Crabb, who was among several Tories speaking out against the cut, told the Commons the “sudden, abrupt withdrawal” of the £20 uplift “is not the right way of doing welfare policy”.

    MPs supported the Labour motion by 253 votes to zero, but it is non-binding and does not force the Government to act.

    Mr Johnson hopes that his reshuffle will give his Government a boost after a series of mishaps, including last week’s decision to hike taxes to fund ill-thought out social care reform.

    But he has created powerful enemies with Mr Williamson, a former chief whip who “knows where the bodies are buried”, on the backbenches and free to cause troubles.

    Mr Raab is understood to be furious with his demotion despite being given the face-saving post of deputy Prime Minister, a job last held by Lib Dem Nick Clegg.

    With the first 18 months since his election victory overshadowed by the Covid pandemic, the PM is understood to be keen to show his reforming zeal.

    Michael Gove has been moved to Housing Secretary with a brief to tackle the housing crisis.

    Michael Gove has a reputation for getting things done
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    PA)

    But the powerful Cabinet minister has also been tasked with keeping the fractured Union from splintering and delivering on the PM’s ill-defined ‘levelling-up’ agenda.

    Home Secretary Priti Patel, who was mooted for demotion amid frustration that she had not got to grips with the ongoing Channel borders crisis, has stayed in post.

    Ex-culture secretary Oliver Dowden moves to replace Ms Milling as Tory party co-chair.

    Dominic Raab has been demoted
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    REUTERS)

    In turn, he will be replaced Nadine Dorries, a best-selling author and former star of I’m a Celebrity… , as Mr Johnson ramps up the so-called “culture war”.

    Other senior ministers to stay in place include Chancellor Rishi Sunak,

    Health Secretary Sajid Javid and Defence Secretary Ben Wallace.

    Welfare Secretary Therese Coffey, who is overseeing the UC cut, will also remain in her job.

    Out – Gavin Williamson, Education

    Gaffe-prone Gav finally paid the price for a litany of bungles, including last year’s A-levels fiasco, confusion over coronavirus rules for schools and failing to secure enough cash for the Covid education catch-up plan. As Defence Secretary, he infamously told Russia to “go away and shut up” – will he take his own advice now he’s out of power?

    Payout: £17,000

    Out – Robert Jenrick, Communities

    On borrowed time since the Westferry affair, when he gave permission for a housing scheme led by a billionaire Tory donor he sat next to at a fundraiser.

    Payout: £17,000

    Out – Robert Buckland, Justice

    The popular Welshman, a former Cardiff crown court judge, is a surprise casualty. He seems to have been axed to make way for demoting Mr Raab.

    Payout: £17,000

    In – Nadine Dorries, Culture, Media and Sport

    A shock pick for the Cabinet, the published author is best known for chomping on ostrich anus, lamb's testicle and other exotic delicacies during her 2012 stint on I'm A Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here!

    Down – Dominic Raab, Demoted from Foreign to Justice, Deputy PM and Lord Chancellor

    Widely tipped for the chop after he stayed at a five-star luxury resort in Crete while the Taliban marched across Afghanistan and seized the capital, Kabul. However, his position as the PM’s number two was formalised with the official DPM title, as well as his return to the Ministry of Justice, where the human rights lawyer was previously a Junior Minister.

    Stays – Priti Patel, Home Secretary

    Up – Nadhim Zahawi, Vaccines to Education

    A remarkable journey from Iraq to the Cabinet for Baghdad-born Zahawi, who has overseen the inoculation scheme. He was previously Minister for Children and Families, having been handed the role in Theresa May ’s chaotic 2018 reshuffle.

    Up – Liz Truss, International Trade to Foreign

    A succession of trade deals struck since Brexit, many of them rollover pacts from when the UK was in the EU, have raised her profile. A darling of Tory grassroots and the latest standard-bearer of the party’s free market economics wing.

    Up – Michael Gove, Cabinet Secretary to Housing

    Now in his sixth Cabinet post since 2010, Gove has reputation for getting things done. One of the toughest issues facing the Tories is how to hit their target of building 300,000 homes a year without upsetting Conservative voters.

    Up – Michael Gove, Cabinet Secretary to Housing

    Now in his sixth Cabinet post since 2010, Gove has reputation for getting things done. One of the toughest issues facing the Tories is how to hit their target of building 300,000 homes a year without upsetting Conservative voters.

    'Cleanout of duffers is too little too late'

    – Analysis by Jason Beattie, Mirror Head of Politics

    Boris Johnson today moved to clean up the mess of his own making.

    This was not so much a reshuffle as an admission he is a poor judge of character.

    It took him two years to twig that Gavin Williamson was woefully out of his depth as Education Secretary.

    Robert Jenrick should have been dismissed as Communities Secretary when it emerged he had fast-tracked a planning development for a Tory donor.

    A remarkable rise for Nadhim Zahawi
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    Image:
    AFP via Getty Images)

    Get all the latest Politics news straight to your inbox. Sign up to one of the Mirror's newsletters

    Dominic Raab proved his unsuitability for the Foreign Office when he stayed on a sun lounger while Afghanistan fell into chaos. But this was not a complete cleanout of Cabinet duds. Priti Patel should have been given her marching orders when she was found to have bullied Home Office staff.

    The reshuffle offered a smokescreen for yesterday’s vote on Universal Credit.

    We should not forget the people who are losing £20 a week or waiting for an op or desperate for a home.

    Sourse: mirror.co.uk

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