Long-serving Defra minister George Eustice resigns

George Eustice has resigned from the government and from his post as Minister of State in Defra. That post is more senior than Therese Coffey as a Parliamentary Under Secretary and less senior than Michael Gove as Secretary of State.

Eustice has been a Defra minister since October 2013 – an exceptionally long time (first as a PUS and then, from May 2015, as Minister of State).

I don’t know him personally at all, but I’ve seen him operate, and I’ve heard tell of him, and although he and I would probably disagree about most things I’m sorry to see him go and admire him for the stand he is taking (even though I disagree with his views on Brexit).

He struck me as someone who knew his subject and worked hard at it – I might be wrong but that is the impression he gave me. Defra has not been blessed by many such ministers in recent years and Eustice stood out as being engaged and competent (even though I don’t agree with him). Parliament needs more MPs like Eustice, who stand up for their beliefs, and government needs more ministers like Eustice who know their subject.

I would certainly suggest that it is time that Therese Coffey were promoted into an agriculture hotseat and out of a biodiversity role for which she is spectacularly unsuited. What a win-win situation that would be… And, yes, that does mean that it would be difficult to imagine anyone who could be worse in that role than she.


6 Replies to “Long-serving Defra minister George Eustice resigns”

  1. I take on board what you say Mark about Eustice being a hard working minister and knowing his subject. That is very rare in minister of this current Government. I have to say though, I fundamentally disagree with his position on Brexit and because this is such an important and overriding issue for this nation. and potentially so disastrous for all of us, I think Mr Eustice’s standing overall does not amount to very much.

  2. I would just add that I fully agree with your comment about Coffey being totally unsuited to her current position and the day she is moved out of It will be a good day for for nature conservation.

  3. Probably sensible to bail out now as if there was one sector that benefitted most from the EU – including soaking up half its budget – it is farming. Exactly what cold shower is likely to follow Brexit is unclear but there’s little doubt farming will never have it so good again.

    1. Yes, it’s bizarre that a majority of farmers voted for Brexit. A strange case of turkey’s voting form Christmas.

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