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Boris Johnson has started firing ministers as he reshapes his administration following the U.K.’s split from the European Union. British media have reported that Theresa Villiers, Andrea Leadsom and Esther McVey could all be out as the prime minister makes way for new blood. Northern Ireland Secretary Julian Smith was first to confirm that he has been removed from Cabinet. Others have met with the premier at his office in Parliament, where he was expected to carry out sackings before announcing appointments from his Downing Street office later.
Read more: Women Set for Junior Jobs in Johnson’s U.K. Government Reshuffle
Julian Smith confirms he’s been fired as Northern Ireland SecretaryDigital Secretary Nicky Morgan is expected to leave Cabinet, as is Attorney General Geoffrey CoxChancellor Sajid Javid, Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab, Cabinet Office Minister Michael Gove and Transport Secretary Grant Shapps all expected to stay in top teamOfficial says changes likely to be more moderate than the sweeping overhaul Johnson had been mulling in recent weeks
Smith Suggests He’s Been Fired (9:25 a.m.)
Julian Smith indicated on Twitter he’s been fired as Northern Ireland Secretary.
“Serving the people of Northern Ireland has been the biggest privilege. I am extremely grateful to Boris Johnson for giving me the chance to serve this amazing part of our country,” Smith wrote. “The warmth & support from people across NI has been incredible. Thank you so much.”
Nightmare on Downing Street as Team Johnson Fears Brexit Mutiny
Smith appears to have been sacked from the role despite being credited with bringing the opposing parties in Northern Ireland together to restart the province’s power-sharing executive last month after a hiatus of three years.
Tory Party’s Challenge With Women (8:45 a.m.)
While Boris Johnson plans to promote more women to junior roles in Thursday’s government reshuffle, a look at the makeup of the Parliamentary Conservative Party shows the challenge it faces in pushing women up through the ranks.
While a record 87 women were elected Conservative Members of Parliament in December’s election, that’s still just 24% of the party’s 365 MPs. The opposition Labour Party, by contrast, has 104 women among its 202 MPs.
Currently, seven out of the Cabinet’s 22 full members are women; of the 32 ministers who attend Cabinet (including full members), 8 are women.
Pickles: Reshuffle Vital for Getting Things Done (Earlier)
Former Conservative Party chairman Eric Pickles urged Boris Johnson to select people who can deliver on policies by effectively running their departments, rather than just because they are good media performers.
“Who can get things done? You can be the greatest communicator in the world, but if you can’t get things done you’re not that much use to a government,” Pickles told Sky News. “The big question is what is the government going to be like for Boris over the next two years, because ff he gets this reshuffle wrong, he isn’t really going to be able to change very much.”
Meanwhile Tobias Ellwood, Tory chairman of the House of Commons Defence Committee, said the prime minister needs to ensure there are dissenting voices around the cabinet table. “A good confident prime minister needs people round the table who will take collective responsibility but also tell perhaps the things he doesn’t want to hear,” he told Sky News.
Women Set for Junior Jobs in Johnson’s U.K. Government Reshuffle
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