Theresa May's cabinet reshuffle

Theresa May announced details about the reshuffle in her cabinet on Monday. The former justice secretary David Lidington has been made Minister for the Cabinet Office and the former secretary for integration is the new Conservative Party chairman. Important posts like those of Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond, Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson and Brexit Minister David Davis were not included in the reshuffle. Has May made the right moves?

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Deutschlandfunk (DE) /

A strong signal

Although Theresa May had little interest in a cabinet shuffle after her weak election result last June, the fact that she has now taken the step makes certain things clear, Deutschlandfunk believes:

“Firstly, May feels stronger: she's survived the first shock. Above all, however, she came home from Brussels with a major success in December, when the EU finally agreed to negotiate with Britain about their future relationship. Secondly, however, Theresa May is not strong enough to tackle the big names in her cabinet. Yes, she made Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson look like a fool several times last autumn. But she can't afford to fire him. ... Above all, however, May is sending a clear signal to her own party: I'm the leader, and I intend to remain the leader for a long time to come.”

The Guardian (GB) /

May missed her chance

Unfortunately Theresa May has chosen the wrong moment to renew her cabinet and show who's boss, The Guardian comments:

“This is not the reshuffle of a strong prime minister that it might have been if she had attempted it when she was flying high at the start of 2017. That would have been the time when Mrs May could have put a reforming stamp on the government she assembled from the wreckage of David Cameron's fall. Instead, she called an election the country did not need or want and was punished for it. A year on, she is a weak leader of a weakened parliamentary party that is held prisoner by the rightwing instincts of its declining and ageing grassroots. In other circumstances, this reshuffle might have helped the Tories break out of their own self-imposed failures. Instead it simply restates the problem that Mrs May seems incapable of solving.”