After seeing a staggering 31 Ministers resign from her top team since becoming Prime Minister in 2016 – by far the worst record of any recent Prime Minister – it is little wonder that Theresa May has been forced to scrape the barrel to try and get Tory MPs to join her government. But her latest appointment could well be the most ridiculous of the lot.

Advertisement

On Wednesday, following her announcement that she would seek a longer Brexit extension and enter into talks with Jeremy Corbyn to find a compromised cross-party solution, Theresa May saw another two Ministers resign.

Nigel Adams, a government Whip and the Under-Secretary of State for Wales, and Chris Heaton Harris, a Brexit Minister, both quit in disgust at the Prime Minister’s pivot towards a soft Brexit.

In response, Theresa May quickly replaced her former Wales Minister with the little known MP for Torbay, Kevin Foster.

Advertisement
Advertisement

However, given the fact that six Ministers had now resigned from her Brexit department, it took Mrs May a little more time to solve this particular conundrum.

Eventually, the Prime Minister decided to promote the Conservative Party’s vice Chairman, James Cleverly, to her Brexit department.

Cleverly’s appointment as a Brexit Minister came as a shock to many – not least because just 6 months ago Mr Cleverly literally stated:

Sign up to be notified of new Evolve Politics articles

I accept the Privacy Policy

Advertisement

“I don’t give a shit about Brexit”

Cleverly’s comments came during a speech to the Tory Reform Group at a fringe event held at Tory Conference in October 2018, and, unsurprisingly, sparked significant anger amongst pro-Brexit Tory activists:

Advertisement
Advertisement

Following his statement, Cleverly attempted to defend his remarks by claiming that “It’s about the result, not the process” – an excuse which did not sit well with Tory colleagues:

Advertisement

The Tories have already lost a significant numbers of members after Theresa May signalled her intent to switch to a softer Brexit by entering into talks with the Labour Party.

However, it is unlikely that her appointment of a man who literally stated that he doesn’t care whatsoever about Brexit to her Brexit department will stem this outward tide of pro-Brexit support.

Evolve Politics needs your help!

If you value the work we do, please consider subscribing for as little as £1 a month, or donating any small amount you can comfortably afford without encountering hardship.

All subscriptions and donations go to our writers and researchers to produce the work we publish. Despite also earning a small income from advertising, we literally could not continue to operate without the support of our readers

Subscribe Donate