McCartney in tune with Johnson as Laura trots off


Karl McCartney MP has been appointed as a parliamentary under secretary of state at the Department for Transport, following the departure of Laura Trott, who resigned in protest at Boris Johnson’s leadership.

Mr McCartney, who is MP for Lincoln, is also a longstanding member of the Transport Select Committee, but will not be able to continue in both roles, given that the role of the committee is to monitor the work of the department.

He said: ‘Transport and its associated infrastructure is a key component in the government’s Levelling Up agenda – and will be a high priority for the incoming government.

‘I look forward to working with Grant Shapps, the secretary of state, in the weeks ahead to help continue to deliver this important agenda.’

In public, Mr McCartney has strongly backed Mr Johnson, who was last week was forced to announce that he will step down, following a wave of resignations.

Ms Trott is now backing former chancellor Rishi Sunak to replace Mr Johnson, as is Mr Shapps, who was previously a candidate appears failed to gain sufficient supporters to stand.

Last week’s major ministerial reshuffle also saw Andrew Stephenson appointed minister without portfolio at the Cabinet Office. He had been minister of state at the DfT since February 2020, with responsibility for HS2.

According to the DfT website, no minister currently has responsibility for HS2.

There is no formal resignation mechanism for a parliamentary committee and members can only be discharged by a decision of the whole House of Commons.

However, the convention is that members appointed to ministerial roles would take no further part in proceedings while they wait to be discharged.

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