Tag Archives: foreign secretary

‘Brightest and best’ civil servants WILL staff Brexit ministry at 9 Downing St – including from Boris Johnson’s foreign office

Comments by new Brexit Secretary David David could fuel claims of a turf war for staff with Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson.

At the heart of government

Sure some of it could be hyperbole by a new cabinet minister, but Mr Davis’s written response to a parliamentary question about the staffing of his new Brexit department may reflect a battle with other Whitehall departments for the best civil servants.

‘The new Department will sit at the heart of government and be staffed by the best and brightest from across the civil service and will draw on external expertise if required,’ said the Brexit secretary in response to a question from Labour MP Andy Slaughter.

‘The unit will bring together officials and policy expertise from across the Cabinet Office, Treasury, Foreign Office, Business Department and the wider civil service. The department’s Ministers are based in 9 Downing Street,’ added Mr Davis.

The Brexit department will be led at permanent secretary level by Oliver Robbins, he also confirmed.

Mr Davis’s written response comes after The Times reported on 19th July that the Foreign Office was ‘fighting a turf war’ to stop Mr Davis from poaching its best officials.

Can the real foreign secretary please stand up?

Boris foreign secretary

Has May boxed in Boris as Foreign Secretary by appointing David Davis and Liam Fox to the Cabinet – click here to read?

Meanwhile, the claims about the best officials working on Brexit could spark concerns that that talent is being taken off other important schemes and programmes. And that could suggest that Theresa May’s government may have a challenge when it comes to its other priorities alongside delivering on ‘Brexit meaning Brexit’.


Has May boxed in Boris as Foreign Secretary by appointing David Davis and Liam Fox to the Cabinet?

Boris Johnson may have been appointed British Foreign Secretary, but has new Prime Minister Theresa May handed key parts of the job to David Davis as Brexit Secretary and Liam Fox as International Trade Secretary?

Being foreign secretary is one of the big jobs in British politics, but some of the central elements of foreign policy don’t appear to be in Boris’s portfolio.

Europe minister job at foreign office axed?

It’s interesting that former Europe minister David Lidington has now been appointed Leader of the Commons and as yet his job at the foreign office hasn’t been filled. The role is not listed, currently, on the foreign office’s website.

europe minister copy

The ‘real’ Foreign Secretary – David Davis

With the appointment of former Europe minister David Davis as Brexit Secretary it perhaps make sense to no longer have a Europe minister. But if the Europe minister job is axed, it underlines that Boris doesn’t have the negotiation of exiting the European Union in his remit. It could be seen as a real actual sign of his wings being clipped by the new prime minister.

Mr Davis is Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union – a job so new in fact that the official UK government website doesn’t even have a department. It’s the same for Liam Fox, who has got a new role as well.

Former Labour minister Tony McNulty has tweeted this:


Boris out of the country

Mr Johnson will also doubtless be out of the UK rather a lot, so out of sight and perhaps mind for Tory activists. Mrs May may not have to worry about her erstwhile rival for the Tory leadership making popular appearances on the domestic stage.

His role as London mayor and jolly attitude could also yet be invaluable as foreign secretary.

Photo credit: Foreign Office / Twitter


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Is William Hague the best PM Britain “never had”? Vote here:

With the news that William Hague is quitting as British foreign secretary to become Leader of the Commons ahead of quitting Parliament in the 2015 general election, do you think he was the best PM that Britain never had? Have your say by voting below:









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