Where Could Gove be Going?

Conversation in Westminster never seems more than two minutes away from reshuffle speculation, with attention focusing on the weeks after the European elections. The argument that Cameron should delay in order to keep wannabes in line over the summer is outweighed by the fact that in doing so he would be putting ministers in jobs for barely six months before an election. With No.11, FCO and the Home Office out of play, one question that keeps coming up is what to do about Michael Gove? With little time to reform another high spending department speculation is growing he could be given a more frontline role for the general election – as party chairman.

The theory goes that Cameron will need to throw an authentic Eurosceptic bone to the party ahead of 2015 after the UKIP drubbing, and Gove, as inner-ish circle, can be trusted not to go off the reservation. As ConservativeHome said this morning, there is a precedent for putting up pugnacious chairman in election years: “It’s worth noting that the nearer a poll got, the bigger a hitter the Chairman was likely to be: Parkinson, Tebbit and Patten were all pre-election chairmen.” Though the question that comes to Guido’s mind is, would he want the job?

And what would happen over at education? Osborne protege Hancock stepping up to replace Gove is worth a punt, with Liz Truss eyeing up Willets cabinet attending job at BIS. If Guido was a betting man…



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Quote of the Day

Charles Clarke says Cameron is the most successful PM for over a century…

“Under Margaret Thatcher the Conservatives gained 99 seats. They lost 211 under John Major, gained one under William Hague, quickly and wisely got rid of Ian Duncan-Smith, gained 32 under Michael Howard and have so far gained 133 under David Cameron who, to the great surprise of many (including senior Conservatives), has turned out to be the most electorally successful Tory leader since 1900.”

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