The commentators 17-07-14
...on Cameron's reshuffle
This week’s Cabinet reshuffle marks a sad break from the relaxed methodology that has served the Prime Minister so well. He has placed presentation ahead of substance, meaning that competent ministers have been sacked and incompetent ones promoted. More important still, there is no underlying Conservative philosophical understanding or approach behind this reshuffle.
- Peter Oborne, Daily Telegraph
Unlike most reshuffles, this wasn’t tinkering. It was a focused refit into a campaigning unit. Yes, it was based on a pretence. It was as though the Liberal Democrats did not exist. Yes, Cameron cast some competent ministers aside. Yet it sends signals: that Cameron knows he has a gender balance problem he wishes to address, that he listens to complaints from ministers and teachers about Gove’s disruptiveness, that he is magnanimous towards almost everyone in his party except David Davis, and that he is ratcheting up the preparations for a set of confrontations with and over Europe.
- Martin Kettle, the Guardian
This week’s reshuffle certainly bore Lynton Crosby's imprint. Previous reshuffles have reflected Mr Osborne’s grip on the Tory operation. Not so much this time. Conspiracy theorists think that Mr Crosby’s argument for Michael Gove’s departure might be motivated by the latter’s criticisms of London’s mayor. While Mr Crosby remains close to Mr Johnson and ran his two mayoral campaigns, it’s just as possible he might back the chancellor in any future Tory leadership campaign.
- Tim Montgomerie, The Times
In the ten months remaining until the general election, the new ministers will have scarcely have had time to master their briefs let alone “take this country forward” before they have to leave Whitehall and hit the campaign trail.
- Andreas Whittam Smith, the Independent
The boldness of the Government reshuffle this week has taken Westminster by surprise for until now David Cameron has been widely regarded as a cautious party manager. Cameron abandoned restraint, dramatically changing the complexion of his Government.
- Leo McKinstrey, Daily Express
The Prime Minister’s judgment is again in question, as well as his habit of making hasty and ill-thought-out appointments which invariably do not turn out as he had hoped.
- Stephen Glover, Daily Mail
The annual Editorial Intelligence comment awards were officially launched last month with the announcement of the seventy-strong panel of judges to be led by Stevie Spring, chair of Children in Need.
They include Lorraine Heggessey, Nihal Arthanayake, Karren Brady, Damian Barr, Lynne Franks, Nicky Gavron, Laura Kuenssberg, Adrian Monck and Kirsty Lang.
Anyone is invited to nominate their favourite commentators for the awards, which are divided into 16 categories. There is no charge for entry.
Public sector strikes
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Oxfam, baby buggies
May v Gove
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