Advertisement

Boris Johnson's cabinet: Jacob Rees Mogg and the other West Country MPs on the move

As he stepped up to the Despatch Box for the first time the North East Somerset MP Jacob Rees-Mogg said, "how lucky" he was to take up his new role.

Few have the knowledge and love of House of Commons procedure as he, and as new PM Boris Johnson will need that knowledge as Jacob Rees-Mogg will be the man who co-ordinates the planning of crucial legislation.

With opposition parties and disgruntled Conservative MPs - including the former Chancellor Philip Hammond - promising to use Parliamentary process to stop any attempts to leave the EU without a deal, Rees-Mogg will have his work cut out as he attempts to steer Brexit through the Commons.

Newly installed Leader of the House of Commons Jacob Rees Mogg speaks at the Despatch Box. Credit: House of Commons/PA

Rees-Mogg is a passionate Brexiteer and those who expect to leave the EU by Halloween will be thrilled with his appointment. Not only because of his knowledge of Parliament, but also because he will constantly battle for Brexit and promote what he sees as the benefits of it.

South Swindon MP Justice Secretary Robert Buckland arrives for his first cabinet meeting Credit: Aaron Chown/PA
  • ROBERT BUCKLAND - JUSTICE SECRETARY AND LORD CHANCELLOR.

The West Country's most senior politician is now the Swindon South MP Robert Buckland, who is a new cabinet member taking up the role as Justice Secretary and Lord Chancellor.

Robert Buckland is a well liked minister and his appointment will also be welcomed by the legal establishment as he is a well respected barrister. He had been a junior minister, taking responsibility for prisons, and is someone who will relish the challenge of running his own department.

Buckland is also a crucial appointment in trying to unify the party as he was a remain voter who accepts the result of the referendum, but isn't keen on a no deal Brexit.

Geoffrey Cox kept his position as Attorney General. Credit: Aaron Chown/PA
  • GEOFFREY COX - ATTORNEY GENERAL

Geoffrey Cox the Torridge and West Devon MP has kept his job as Attorney General, the Government's senior legal advisor.

He is one of a handful of senior ministers on Theresa May's Cabinet to keep a job in the Johnson regime, Cox baked Boris Johnson in the leadership race and is a popular Attorney General. He will take a crucial role in plotting our EU exit.

With our EU Exit date less than a hundred days away Mr Johnson will have his work cut out if he is to achieve an exit deal. It'll be interesting to see if there is anything he can come up with that both Jacob Rees-Mogg and Robert Buckland can agree to support.

North Somerset MP Liam Fox was among three West Country MPs to return to the back benches. Credit: Victoria Jones/PA
  • OTHER MINISTERS

On the lower ranks of Government Boris Johnson has been a lot less brutal with only a handful of ministers losing their jobs - none in the West Country.

Chris Skidmore, the Kingswood MP, moves to the Department of Health and Social Care where he takes charge of the health part of the operation.

This is an area that both Mr Johnson and his predecessor promised huge amounts of cash, and the new PM wants operation waiting times to be cut drastically - that will now become Skidmore's responsibility.

A number of other MPs are keeping their Minister of State roles - the rung below Cabinet.

The South West Wiltshire MP Andrew Murrison stays at the Foreign Office (the only minister to keep their job in that department) and among his responsibilities is relations with Iran.

Justin Tomlinson, the Swindon North MP is keeping his job at the Department for Work and Pensions.

On the junior rungs the Torbay MP Kevin Foster stays as a Wales Office and Cabinet Office Minister, John Glen the Salisbury MP stays at the Treasury and the Taunton Deane MP Rebecca Pow stays as Tourism Minister.

  • CABINET SACKINGS

As part of a brutal night of cabinet sackings and resignations the North Somerset MP Liam Fox was axed as International Trade Secretary, Mel Stride the Mid Devon MP returns to the back benches after his time in Cabinet as Leader of the House, Claire Perry the Devizes MP is out of Government too but has been given a job as President of a bid for the UK to host a world climate conference.

Politics can be brutal but nothing recently has been a politically brutal as Boris Johnson's first night as Prime Minister.