Twelve more of the 2010 intake appointed as PPSs
By Jonathan Isaby
In June most Cabinet ministers had a parliamentary private secretary appointed - many of whom had been frontbench spokesmen in opposition but not afforded ministerial jobs.
Then in September (reported here and here) the remainder of the Cabinet and a first clutch of ministers of state were afforded a PPS - with nine members of the new intake getting their first role (Nigel Adams, Angie Bray, Conor Burns, Glyn Davies, Jessica Lee, Nicky Morgan, Mary Macleod, Eric Ollerenshaw and Alok Sharma).
Today a further clutch of PPS appointments has been announced as follows:
- Jake Berry, MP for Rossendale and Darwen, will be PPS to Housing Minister Grant Shapps;
- Nick Boles, MP for Grantham and Stamford, will be PPS to Nick Gibb;
- George Freeman, MP for Mid Norfolk, will be PPS to Energy and Climate Change Minister Gregory Barker;
- Richard Graham, MP for Gloucester, will be PPS to Foreign Office Minister Lord Howell;
- Sajid Javid, MP for Bromsgrove, will be PPS to Further Education Minister John Hayes;
- Andrew Jones, MP for Harrogate and Knaresborough, will be PPS to Business and Enterprise Minister, Mark Prisk;
- Esther McVey, MP for Wirral West, will be PPS to Employment Minister Chris Grayling;
- Mark Menzies, MP for Fylde, will be PPS to Energy and Climate Change Minister Charles Hendry;
- David Rutley, MP for Macclesfield, will be PPS to Immigration Minister Damian Green;
- Alec Shelbrooke, MP for Elmet and Rothwell, will be PPS to Theresa Villiers;
- Julian Smith, MP for Skipton and Ripon, will be PPS to International Development Minister Alan Duncan;
- Anna Soubry, MP for Broxtowe, will be PPS to Health Minister Simon Burns;
I make that a total of 40 Conservative MPs now locked into the "payroll vote", expected always to vote with the Government in the division lobbies - of whom 21 are from the 147-strong intake of 2010.
I think (but am willing to be contradicted if there is evidence) that this is record speed for so many new MPs to be offered preferment in this way (and I know of a number of MPs who were sounded out about such jobs who refused them).
I suspect the Whips Office are nervous about the independent-mindedness of the Class of 2010 and that this is a way of seeking to keep them in line.
Postscript: As pointed out in a comment below, it was remiss of me not to offer my congratulations to all the new appointees: apologies - I was rushing to publish the piece before dashing off to an event and have now been able to congratulate two of their number in person, but congratulations to them one and all!