Esther mcvey

There aren’t enough normal people in Cabinet – male or female

Well, it’s looking good for Esther, Liz and Priti, isn’t it? The one handle most of us have by now got on the reshuffle is that it’s one for the girls, an opportunity for the PM to remedy his woman deficit. Out with fatty Pickles, grand Sir George and genial Ken Clarke; in with go-ahead Liz Truss and the photogenic Esther McVey and the feisty Priti Patel. I suppose this swings and roundabouts business is fair enough, though as the Daily Mail rather wearily put it in its editorial yesterday, ‘ministers should be chosen for their talent, not their gender.’ Boring but obvious but true. So let’s pause now to

Briefing: Maria Miller’s marginal critics

Day five into the Maria Miller debacle and the calls for her resignation keep on coming. As Isabel reported earlier, more MPs are starting to break cover. Many of the critical Tories are speaking to the press anonymously, but some have been more vocal, especially the younger MPs who sit in marginal seats – who are more conscious of the slings and arrows of outraged voters. Here’s a breakdown of some MPs who have criticised Miller publicly and what their motivations might be: Esther McVey ‘I can honestly say it wouldn’t be how I would have made an apology’ The Employment Minister is widely tipped for promotion in the near

Esther McVey breaks cover on Miller: ‘It wouldn’t be how I would have made an apology’

Esther McVey is known as a plain-speaking Tory. That ability to avoid mincing her words might propel her into the Cabinet one day – possibly as a replacement for Maria Miller, the way things are looking. But tonight her plain-speaking nature hasn’t been that helpful to her ministerial colleague. McVey has told ITV’s The Agenda: ‘I can honestly say it wouldn’t be how I would have made an apology. But different people have different styles and do things in different ways.’ Asked whether Miller should go, McVey said: ‘David Cameron has the final say on this. He’s standing by her.’ On the programme, to be broadcast at 10.35 tonight, the

Esther McVey shows that the Tories are aggressively on message

Work and Pensions Questions in the Commons has long been a battle between the two main parties for the moral high ground, but today Esther McVey, who appeared even more energetic than usual, made that battle just a little bloodier. She scolded Sheila Gilmore for not smiling when she talked about more people in employment and then listed ‘all the good news that is happening’. Then she told Stephen Hepburn that he hadn’t read the figures on the labour market, joking that ‘the honourable gentleman spoke with gusto but that was all he spoke with’. She was quite keen on the word ‘gusto’, actually, praising Nigel Adams for asking a

Female and northern MPs charge your phone, the reshuffle is on

There are two more government resignations ahead of tonight’s reshuffle. John Randall, the deputy chief whip, has gone as has Chloe Smith, the Cabinet Office minister. Randall’s retirement has been overdue for a while now in the opinion of many in Downing Street. There is irritation at the way he put pressure on David Cameron to get rid of Andrew Mitchell during the plebgate affair. His departure and the expected elevation of several whips—Nicky Morgan and Karen Bradley are both in line for promotion—paves the way for a freshening up of the whips’ office. Chloe Smith quitting is going to tempt everyone to dust off the footage of that Paxman