Conservative Diary

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Alan Duncan demoted from Shadow Cabinet

DUNCAN ALAN NEW Rumours have been circulating in Westminster over the past hour; the BBC now has confirmation:

"Alan Duncan, the senior Conservative secretly filmed complaining that MPs were expected to live on "rations", has been demoted from the shadow cabinet.

He goes from being shadow leader of the Commons to shadow prisons minister.

Mr Duncan, who was responsible for the Tories' position on MPs' expenses, is said to accept he is now a "lightning conductor" for anger over the issue.

The Rutland and Melton MP agreed to leave the shadow cabinet after a meeting with Tory leader David Cameron.

A replacement is to be announced on Tuesday."

In the most recent ConHome Members' poll of Shadow Cabinet members, 81% were dissatified with Alan Duncan's performance.

Update: Alan Duncan released the following statement:

"This is a sensible decision. You have to be realistic about how difficult the expenses issue has been. What matters most is winning the election and David Cameron becoming the prime minister. I don't want to be a brake on that by making a difficult issue more problematic. I am very happy to get stuck into another job."

Tuesday morning update:

Sir George Young becomes Shadow Leader of the House

Edward Garnier, who was shadow prisons minister, is made Shadow Attorney General

Jonathan Isaby

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