Who will be our new leaders?

With the general election results announced tomorrow, we’d thought we’d look at the runners and riders for the next Ministers at the DCLG.

A Conservative Victory

Most pollsters and psephologists are still predicting a Conservative victory – around 60 to 80 seems to be a consistent view, although Iain Dale last night reiterated his belief, through ‘logic and research’, that they are on for a majority of 122.

Much less than 60, and Theresa May might have questions to answer from an embittered party – and have less leeway to make the changes she wants.  Above 60, and the PM becomes her own master.

Whatever happens, the PM looks set to make changes to her team.  Philip Hammond has been rumoured to be reshuffled off to green pastures, and his absence during the campaign has been noted.  Former DCLG Secretary Greg Clark is a contender for the job, as is the ever visible Amber Rudd and even possibly the ‘dependable’ Michael Fallon.

For May to move Boris out of Foreign Secretary is now unlikely – particularly after she used him as her warm up act to her campaign speech on Tuesday night.  Boris adds that ‘mudwhumping’ panache to her government, and also brings the Brexiteers along with him.

If Greg Clark becomes Chancellor, what happens to Business Secretary? Jeremy Hunt has been looking to get out of the NHS job for over a year now, although someone like Greg Hands would also be a good choice here.

Will she move Chris Grayling from his Transport job?  He’s definitely enjoying it and for her Tory Party leadership campaign manager to be demoted would be seen as poor show.

And what about Communities Secretary?  As a Muslim, Javid spoke out on Tuesday to urge other British Muslims to do more than simply condemn the terror attacks and that they had a ‘unique burden’ to tackle extremism.  But if May thinks someone else should take the Housing White Paper forward, who should it be?  Two Housing Ministers (one former and one current) have been tipped by Conservative Home – Brandon Lewis and Gavin Barwell would both be ideal candidates.  Their other tip is Ben Gummer, who is now in the now less visible position heading up the Cabinet Office.  But his promotion would keep the interest in the family – he is the son of the former highly regarded Environment Secretary John Gummer (now Lord Deben).  Gummer and Barwell have marginal seats (Ipswich and Croydon Central respectively), so they’d have to win their seats first.

A Labour win

And what if Labour won?  A Corbyn victory would vindicate the Labour naysayers in the parliamentary party who have failed to back him.  Corbyn would continue to rely on his staunch parliamentary backers like Diane Abbott, John McDonnell, Emily Thornberry, as well as colleagues like Tom Watson and Kier Starmer.

John Healey is the main candidate for Secretary of State for Housing – currently holding the shadow post and previously holding the junior ministerial positions (for housing, planning and local government) under Gordon Brown.

Whatever happens, Thorncliffe will be able assist you to understand the politics of planning over the coming weeks.  For more information, email Managing Director Richard Patient or call 020 7587 3047.


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