Tories call for a more Eurosceptic minister
Senior Conservative backbenchers are pressing David Cameron to appoint a more Eurosceptic Europe Minister in his upcoming reshuffle. The post has been held since the 2010 election by David Lidington – a moderate figure whose appointment was welcomed by other EU Governments.
Mr Lidington got the job in place of Mark Francois, the former Eurosceptic shadow Europe minister, who had brokered the Conservative controversial split from the main centre-right EPP group in the European parliament.
But now backbenchers are pressing Mr Cameron to move Mr Lidington in the reshuffle to signal a new harder line. Some are pressing him to bring back Mr Francois or offer the job to Graham Brady, chairman of the 1922 Committee.
Mr Brady was the Tory spokesman on Europe for three years in opposition but resigned in 2007 in a row over grammar schools.
One senior Tory backbencher said: "We need someone more Eurosceptic as Europe Minister. This is about to become the most important policy area."
Any move to install a more Eurosceptic figure would be met with resistance from the Liberal Democrats but Tory right-wingers say Mr Cameron must act if he wants to reassure his party.
"Europe is one of the key appointments and the Liberal Democrats should be told they can go hang," one said.
Mr Cameron regards Mr Lidington as one of the three most effective ministers of state in his government. But he could reward him with a promotion to the Cabinet as Northern Ireland Secretary, since he held that in opposition.
- 1 Caitlyn Jenner car crash: Driver who died in collision sued by surviving passengers for $18.5m
- 3 Watch the Supermoon live: How to see the brightest Moon of the year tonight
- 4 Hulk Hogan wants to be Donald Trump's running mate in the US Presidential election
Caitlyn Jenner car crash: Driver who died in collision sued by surviving passengers for $18.5m
Celebrity Big Brother 2015: Tila Tequila kicked off show after 'describing Hitler as a good man'
Watch the Supermoon live: How to see the brightest Moon of the year tonight
Hulk Hogan wants to be Donald Trump's running mate in the US Presidential election
Blood Moon and Supermoon: September to bring brightest – and dimmest – full Moon of the year on same night
Climate change: 2015 will be the hottest year on record 'by a mile', experts say
'Women only' train carriages: Jeremy Corbyn unveils radical move to tackle public harassment
Black holes are a passage to another universe, says Stephen Hawking
Iain Duncan Smith 'should resign over disability benefit death figures', says Jeremy Corbyn
Stock up on canned food for stock market crash, warns former Gordon Brown adviser
Labour leadership: Jeremy Corbyn voters most likely to believe 'world is controlled by a secretive elite'
£18000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Sales Executive or Senior Sal...
£40000 - £55000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...
£22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This industry leading company produces h...
£20000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This IT provider for the educat...