Prime Minister calls on one of Parliament’s ‘nice guys’ to replace Dominic Raab after harassment: ex-lawyer and defense minister Alex Chalk gets first cabinet job as justice minister, while Rishi Sunak appoints close ally Oliver Dowden as his new deputy
- Alex Chalk replaces Dominic Raab as Justice Minister in government shake-up
Alex Chalk was appointed the new justice minister today after Dominic Raab resigned after a report revealed he had bullied his staff.
The 46-year-old had been defense minister before being called up by Rishi Sunak to replace outgoing Mr Raab as head of the Justice Ministry.
In a series of government changes in the wake of Mr Raab’s departure, Mr Sunak has appointed his close ally Oliver Dowden as his new deputy prime minister.
Mr Dowden will combine the post, meaning he will deputize for Mr Sunak on questions from the Prime Minister when required, with his current job as Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster.
Mr Raab had been Mr Sunak’s deputy since October last year, having previously held the position under ex-Prime Minister Boris Johnson.
Alex Chalk was appointed the new justice minister today after Dominic Raab resigned after a report revealed he had bullied his staff
In a series of government changes in the wake of Mr Raab’s departure, Rishi Sunak has appointed his close ally Oliver Dowden as his new Deputy Prime Minister
Mr Sunak, Mr Dowden and Mr Jenrick, who is immigration minister, were previously dubbed the ‘three musketeers’ at Westminster after rising through the Tory ranks together.
Mr Dowden was a key figure in Mr Sunak’s campaign in the Tory leadership contest last summer.
He was previously chairman of the Conservative Party under Mr Johnson, but resigned in June last year after disastrous by-election losses in Wakefield and Tiverton and Honiton.
Mr Chalk’s first promotion to cabinet comes after he held a series of junior ministerial positions under Mr Johnson and then Mr Sunak.
He entered Parliament in 2015 after being elected MP for Cheltenham, his hometown, in that year’s general election.
The Oxford-educated former barrister was prisons minister and then solicitor-general under Mr Johnson, before being appointed defense procurement minister when Mr Sunak became prime minister in October last year.
On his website, a biography of Mr Chalk states that he is “regularly described as one of Parliament’s ‘nice lads'”.
It also says he is “considered an “up-and-coming” and a “rising star” of the 2015 Tory MP intake.
During his 14-year legal career, Mr. Chalk specialized in counter-terrorism, homicide and serious fraud cases.
He was also previously a speechwriter for William Hague when he was a Tory leader.
Mr Sunak risked falling out with his nomination of Mr Chalk as Justice Minister and Mr Dowden as the new Deputy Prime Minister following Mr Raab’s departure.
It was expected that the prime minister would take the opportunity of a mini-reshuffle to promote another woman to the highest level of his government in order to improve the gender balance in his cabinet.
More to follow…