She looks very uncomfortable defending her boss’s flagship policy
A new YouGov poll this morning finds that there has been a less than overwhelming response to TMay’s main domestic policy – the return of grammar schools. 34% say they back the plan; 25% want all existing grammars closed and 20% thought things should stay as they are.
The minister with the task of defending this is EdSec, Justine Greening, who looked very uncomfortable in the Commons earlier in the week. She also has to contend with a vigorous effort by her predecessor, Nicky Morgan, to defend what was established government policy under Cameron.
The way the policy has emerged bit by bit has not been helpful and, as we saw at PMQs, TMay, has yet to evolve the convincing rhetoric to deal with the objections to this big change.
Justine Greening’s pull out from last night Question Time at the last minute spoke volumes. The minister responsible for steering this through is not in a position to answer detailed questions.
I wonder how much input she had in May’s announcement. My guess is not a lot and, if so, you can see her position getting more and more difficult. So far the new cabinet is not speaking with one voice and there’ve been a number of occasions when senior minister have been over-ruled. The only view that matters of course is that of the resident of Number 10.
Greening is strong minded as we saw when she was transport minister with Heathrow being part of her brief.
Ladbrokes and Betfair are the only bookies with a next cabinet exit market up. Greening at 20/1 looks a value bet and I’ve reinvested part of my projected Diane James winnings. The announcement of next UKIP leader is due at 1.30pm