Minister for the Cabinet Office
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|Minister for the Cabinet Office|
|Style||The Right Honourable|
|Member of||Cabinet (Since February 2022 the role attends Cabinet but not as a full member)|
National Security Council
|Reports to||Prime Minister of the United Kingdom|
on the advice of the Prime Minister
|Term length||No fixed term|
The minister for the Cabinet Office is a position in the Cabinet Office of the United Kingdom. The minister is responsible for the work and policies of the Cabinet Office, and since February 2022, reports to the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster. The position is currently the third highest ranking minister in the Cabinet Office, after the Prime Minister and the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster.
From the Second May ministry until mid-2019 when the First Johnson ministry came to power, it functioned as an alternative title to Deputy Prime Minister or First Secretary of State. This practice ended when Dominic Raab was appointed as First Secretary of State on 24 July 2019, by Boris Johnson. Since a reshuffle in February 2022, the role attends Cabinet but not as a full member.
The corresponding shadow minister is the shadow minister for the Cabinet Office.
Function and status
The Cabinet Office has a primary responsibility to support the work of the Prime Minister and ensure the effective running of government. Within this set-up, the Minister for the Cabinet Office has been seen to have varying responsibilities and stature in the government. The role is a flexible one and has variously been described as one or several of the following under different office-holders (and sometimes conflicting accounts of the status of the same office holder):
- Monitoring the co-ordination of the work of government departments
- Chairing or sitting on several Cabinet Committees
- An additional title to indicate special responsibility
- An additional title to indicate seniority
The government describes the minister for the Cabinet Office as being "in overall charge of and responsible for the policy and work of the department, and attends Cabinet".
Damian Green held the office in 2017, simultaneously with the office of First Secretary of State. Green chaired numerous Cabinet Committees and filled in for the prime minister at Prime Minister's Questions. By virtue of his responsibilities and as First Secretary of State, he was considered the de facto deputy prime minister. Upon the appointment of David Lidington in 2018, Lidington retained the responsibilities Green had held, but the title of First Secretary of State remained vacant (as did the office of Deputy Prime Minister, vacant since 2015).
As a result, the office in its 2017–2019 absorbed the responsibilities of a de facto Deputy Prime Minister, without either of the associated titles usually granted to individuals in the British Government (First Secretary of State or Deputy Prime Minister). In 2019, new Prime Minister Boris Johnson ended this arrangement with the appointment of a new First Secretary of State, Dominic Raab, before upgrading his title again to Deputy Prime Minister in 2021.
Current minister and responsibilities
The most recent responsibilities are:
- Oversight of all Cabinet Office policy and appointments
- Oversight of transition period activity and our future relations with the EU
- Oversight of constitutional policy and enhancement, defending democracy and electoral law
- Devolution issues and Strengthening the Union
- Leading cross-government and public sector transformation and efficiency
- Oversight of cross-government work on veterans’ issues
- Oversight of Cabinet Office responsibilities on National Security and resilience, and the Civil Contingencies Secretariat, including COVID-19
- Supporting the coordination of the cross-government and the devolution aspects of the response to COVID-19
Ministers for the Cabinet Office
Every occupant of the position has simultaneously held a sinecure office, this being Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster from Clark to Byrne, Paymaster General from Jowell to Gummer, and First Secretary of State with Green. Oliver Dowden, and currently Michael Ellis, held the office of Paymaster General, while David Lidington, Michael Gove and Steve Barclay held the role of Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster.
Ministers of State at the Cabinet Office
Occasionally, a Minister of State at the Cabinet Office is appointed who is junior to the minister for the Cabinet Office.
|Name||Portrait||Term of office||Party||Prime minister||Title of position|
|Derek Foster||2 May 1997||6 May 1997||Labour||Blair||Minister of State for the Cabinet Office|
|Peter Kilfoyle||6 May 1997||28 July 1999|
|The Lord Falconer of Thoroton||28 July 1998||11 June 2001|
|The Baroness Morgan of Huyton||11 June 2001||November 2001|
|Ian McCartney||28 July 1999||11 June 2001|
|Barbara Roche||11 June 2001||29 May 2002|
|Douglas Alexander||29 May 2002||13 June 2003|
|David Miliband||16 December 2004||11 May 2005|
|Vacant||11 May 2005||4 September 2012|
|David Laws||4 September 2012||7 May 2015||Liberal Democrats||Minister Assisting the Deputy Prime Minister|
|Vacant||8 May 2015||13 February 2020||Cameron
|Chloe Smith||13 February 2020||16 September 2021||Conservatives||Minister of State for the Constitution and Devolution|
|The Lord Agnew of Oulton||14 February 2020||24 January 2022||Minister of State for Efficiency and Transformation|
|The Lord True||14 February 2020||Incumbent|
(as President for COP26)
|8 January 2021|
|The Lord Frost||1 March 2021||18 December 2021||Minister of State for EU Relations|
|Nigel Adams||15 September 2021||Incumbent||Minister of State without Portfolio|
|Jacob Rees-Mogg||8 February 2022||Minister of State for Brexit Opportunities and Government Efficiency|
- "Minister for the Cabinet Office - GOV.UK".
- "Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster - GOV.UK".
- "Minister for the Cabinet Office - GOV.UK".
- "What We Do". Cabinet Office. Government of the United Kingdom.
- "Fourth Report: The Cabinet and the Centre of Government". Constitution Committee of the House of Lords. UK Parliament. Retrieved 9 January 2018.
- "Minister for the Cabinet Office". Cabinet Office. Government of the United Kingdom.
- Cheung, Aron (27 July 2017). "Cabinet committees show Damian Green is de facto Deputy PM". Institute for Government.