George Eustice faces demotion in upcoming reshuffle as Boris Johnson prepares to reward allies

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
·2 min read
In this article:
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
The Environment Secretary's office refused to comment on speculation he is to be sacked  - The Telegraph/Geoff Pugh
The Environment Secretary's office refused to comment on speculation he is to be sacked - The Telegraph/Geoff Pugh

George Eustice faces demotion in a potential upcoming reshuffle after concerns about his record on animal rights, it has been suggested.

Boris Johnson is rumoured to be considering promoting his chief whip, Mark Spencer, into the Environment Secretary role in an upcoming revamp of his top team, leaving Mr Eustice in a more junior role or returning to the Tory back benches.

The Environment Secretary is thought to be too close to the farming industry and last year oversaw the issuing of more licences for badger culls, which Mr Johnson has now pledged to end.

The Prime Minister’s wife, Carrie, has long campaigned against badger culls and is thought to have urged Mr Johnson to put a stop to the practice at the beginning of this year.

Mr Eustice was born into a farming family and has close ties to the National Farmers Union, which represents the agricultural industry in the UK.

Mr Spencer has been touted as a potential replacement after almost two years as Mr Johnson’s chief enforcer in the House of Commons. He is a former member of Parliament’s environment and environmental audit committees.

The MP for Sherwood since 2010, Mr Spencer has previously supported the use of genetically modified foods in the UK. The expansion of GM products following Britain’s exit from the EU was a key pledge of Mr Johnson’s when he took office in July 2019.

If Mr Spencer was to move from the Chief Whip’s office, it is thought he could be replaced by the current Conservative Party chairman, Amanda Milling.

Ms Milling performed well during the “Super Thursday” series of elections in May and oversaw Conservative Party headquarters during the row over the financing of Mr Johnson’s Downing Street flat renovation.

Sources say Ms Milling has a forensic memory and is popular with Tory backbenchers, which may aid her in attempting to convince rebellious Conservative MPs to vote with the Government.

Gavin Williamson, the Education Secretary, is also due to be sacked, according to a report in the Mail on Sunday.

It is thought that Mr Williamson, who is said not to get on with Mrs Johnson, could be replaced by Sajid Javid.

Mr Javid is a former Chancellor of the Exchequer who resigned in February last year amid a row with Dominic Cummings about his choice of special advisers.

Since leaving the Tory front bench, Mr Javid has worked with the Centre for Policy Studies think tank, where he has produced various policy papers, including on how the Government might manage post-pandemic recovery.

Downing Street has repeatedly denied that Mr Johnson is considering a Cabinet reshuffle. Mr Eustice’s office declined to comment on the speculation.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting