‘Promoted’ Burns Allowed to Report to PM Directly

With the PM heading to Northern Ireland to try and solve the protocol issue and speak to party leaders, you would hope the PM’s SW1 Northern Ireland team would be united at this politically challenging moment. Unfortunately it looks like the Northern Ireland Office isn’t entirely harmonious…

During Lobby today there was some confusion about Minister of State Conor Burns’s time in the US last week. According to the PM’s spokesman he didn’t visit as ‘Minister of State’, he went with a new title as the “PM’s Special Representative to the US on the NI Protocol”. While this technicality may sound unimportant, ‘special representative’ allows Burns to report directly to the PM rather than via his departmental boss, Secretary of State Brandon Lewis. Guido’s since verified this hierarchy of Conor Burns reporting directly to the PM, though a source batting for Brandon Lewis emphasised he is still a junior minister in the Northern Ireland Office, and as such does still very much report to the Secretary of State on the wider range of issues relating to his primary position, as well as continuing to report to Lewis Brandon on the protocol and US relations. Meow…

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mdi-account-multiple-outline Brandon Lewis Conor Burns
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