Esther McVey appointed as Secretary of State for Work and Pensions

Written by Natalie Tuck

Prime Minister Theresa May has appointed MP for Tatton, Esther McVey, as Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, it has been confirmed.

As part of the Conservative Party cabinet reshuffle today, 8 January 2018, McVey was appointed to the role, replacing David Gauke who was appointed as Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice.

However, McVey was not May's first choice for the role, as Education Secretary Justine Greening was offered the position but turned it down and resigned from the cabinet completely.

McVey was elected MP for Tatton in June 2017, having previously served as MP for Wirral West between May 2010 and March 2015. She has served as deputy chief whip in the House of Commons since November 2017.

Prior to that her roles in parliament have been a cabinet Minister of State for Employment in the Department for Work and Pensions and Parliamentary Under Secretary of State in the department for disabled people.

She currently sits on the Selection Committee and has previously held a place on the Home Affairs Committee. Before entering politics she was a tv presenter and businesswoman. She was born in Liverpool and educated at Belvedere School. She has a degree in law from Queen Mary University London, and a masters in radio journalism from City University in London.

Her appointment comes as Former Pensions Minister, now Royal London director of policy, Steve Webb criticised May's decision to remove Gauke from the role.

"It is deeply disappointing that David Gauke has been moved from his role in charge of UK pensions policy. Pensioners and workers saving for their retirement need someone in charge at the DWP who understands pensions and who has a good relationship with the Treasury," he said.

"David Gauke ticked both of those boxes and it is very regrettable that he was given just seven months in the role. Once again we have a revolving door of pensions ministers which will deprive us of the stability which such a long-term area requires."

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