Who’s in and who’s out as Tories reshuffle top team after election loss


The Conservative Party has announced a reshuffle, as former ministers and returning MPs make the transition into becoming the shadow cabinet.

Lord Cameron has resigned from Rishi Sunak’s frontbench, having been foreign secretary before Labour’s victory in Thursday’s election, and has now been replaced in the shadow role by his deputy Andrew Mitchell.

Also, despite clinging on to a seat in last week’s vote, Richard Holden has quit as Tory party chairman, with Richard Fuller taking his place in the interim.

Writing in his resignation letter, Mr Holden said there needed to be a “thorough review into the general election campaign”, but it would “best take place with a new set of eyes to help provide the clearest view”.

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In a statement, Mr Fuller said the party had had “a difficult election”, but said it was now “important that we regroup and reflect on these results”.

He added: “We should also challenge ourselves candidly and deeply on the strengths of the Conservative Party across the country and outline where improvements can be made.”

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A total of 175 Conservative MPs lost their seats in last week’s Labour landslide, including 11 ministers, leaving just 121 members compared to the government’s 412.

The electoral massacre has left Mr Sunak as the leader of the opposition and with a number of gaps to fill on his frontbench.

But with the former prime minister confirming he will stand down as leader when the process to elect a successor is in place, it is unclear how long this shadow cabinet shall remain.

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Richard Holden faced accusations of being parachuted into a safe seat ahead of the election.

Other changes at the top include Kemi Badenoch becoming shadow levelling up secretary, putting her across the dispatch box from Labour’s Angela Rayner, James Cartlidge becoming shadow defence secretary to replace Grant Shapps, and Ed Argar becoming shadow justice secretary to replace Alex Chalk.

Further replacements for exiting ministers include Andrew Griffith taking on the science, innovation and technology brief from the now former MP Michelle Donelan, Chris Philp becoming shadow leader of the House instead of Penny Mordaunt, and Damian Hinds becoming shadow education secretary instead of Gillian Keegan.

Julia Lopez will become shadow culture secretary after Lucy Frazer lost her seat, Helen Whately will handle transport after the loss of Mark Harper, and Andrew Bowie will take over as shadow veterans minister from Johnny Mercer.

Mr Fuller concluded: “United as a party we will be ready and able to hold this new Labour government to account every step of the way.”

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