Amber Rudd's resignation: Fourth cabinet minister steps down in six months

Several members of Ms May's top team have been embroiled in high profile scandals

Monday 30 April 2018 12:28
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Home secretary Amber Rudd in central London on 24 April 2018
Home secretary Amber Rudd in central London on 24 April 2018

Amber Rudd’s resignation as home secretary for "inadvertently" misleading MPs over targets for removing illegal immigrants, makes her the fourth minister to step down in six months.

It has been a turbulent time for prime minister Theresa May after she lost her parliamentary majority following a snap election and she has overseen a number of high profile exits from her top team.

As she has attempted to balance challenges at home and abroad, while manoeuvring through the Brexit negotiations, several members of her cabinet have been embroiled in high profile scandals.

In November Michael Fallon resigned as Defence Secretary amid a flurry of revelations of sexual harassment and inappropriate behaviour in Westminster, themselves prompted by the Harvey Weinstein allegations.

One of Ms May’s closest allies, he admitted that his behaviour had fallen “below the high standards” that were expected.

A week later Priti Patel was forced to step down from her position as International Development Secretary after it was revealed she held a series of meetings with top Israeli politicians including the country's prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu.

She had not informed either the prime minister or Downing Street about her plans - a breach of protocol.

The following month, Ms May’s deputy and important ally Damian Green was asked to leave the Cabinet after a probe found he made “inaccurate and misleading” statements about pornography found on his computer.

An inquiry found he had breached the ministerial code. He also apologised for making writer Kate Maltby feel uncomfortable in 2015.

In her written response to his resignation, Ms May expressed "deep regret" at Mr Green's departure but said his actions "fell short" of the conduct expected of a cabinet minister.

As the prime minister looks to rebuild her cabinet and continue on with the Brexit negotiations, she will undoubtedly be hoping that no one else is forced to quit.

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