UK defence politicians (Picture: Gov.uk).
Politics

Who Are The UK's Defence Politicians?

We take a look at the changes inside the Ministry of Defence, following Boris Johnson's cabinet reshuffle.

UK defence politicians (Picture: Gov.uk).

Following the latest cabinet reshuffle under Prime Minster Boris Johnson, there have also been new appointments in ministerial positions.

We take a look at what has changed in the Ministry of Defence (MOD) and who has kept a role in the department.

The New Arrival

Minister for Defence Procurement: Jeremy Quin

Jeremy Quin MP has been named the new Minister for Defence Procurement.

He takes over from James Heappey MP, who replaces Anne-Marie Trevelyan MP as Armed Forces Minister.

Mr Quin has been the MP for Horsham since 2015 and previously served as Parliamentary Secretary at the Cabinet Office from 16 December 2019 to 13 February 2020.

Jeremy Quin MP (Picture: Gov.uk).
Jeremy Quin has become the latest addition to the UK defence team (Picture: Gov.uk).

According to the voting records website TheyWorkForYou.com, Mr Quin has consistently voted for replacing Trident with a new nuclear weapons system.

He also supported air strikes against the so-called Islamic State in Syria in 2015, and has voted against investigations into the Iraq War.

As Minister for Defence Procurement, Mr Quin will be responsible for the Defence Equipment Plan, relations with defence industry and exports, science and technology.

Also within his remit will be nuclear enterprise, innovation and environmental sustainability. 

Who stays

Secretary for the State of Defence: Ben Wallace

Ben Wallace remains Defence Secretary, despite speculation that he could be sacked.

He was appointed on 24 July 2019 following the arrival of Boris Johnson at Number 10.

The former officer for the Scots Guards replaced Penny Mordaunt in the Cabinet after just 85 days in the role.

The MP for Wyre and Preston North took the post after a three-year stint as a security minister.

Ben Wallace
Ben Wallace says he has "big shoes to fill" after replacing Penny Mordaunt as the UK's Secretary for Defence (Picture: UK Parliament).

Mr Wallace was commissioned into the Scots Guards at 20 years of age and during the 1990s served in Northern Ireland, Germany, Cyprus and Central America.

Upon his entry to the post in July last year, Mr Wallace said: "I know first-hand the dedication and hard work of our Armed Forces and I will be committed to ensuring their interests come first."

In his role, he is responsible for overseeing the department's affairs, including nuclear operations and strategic international partnerships with the US, France, Germany, Saudi Arabia and NATO.

As an MP, Mr Wallace has consistently voted for the use of UK forces in combat operations overseas, including airstrikes against the so-called Islamic State in Syria and Iraq.

He also voted against the requiring of conditions to be filled out before any military action in response to the use of chemical weapons in Syria and has almost always supported replacing the UK's Trident nuclear deterrent programme with a new system. 

Mr Wallace has also generally voted for investigations into the Iraq War and generally voted against the strengthening of the Military Covenant

Minister of State for Defence: Baroness Annabel Goldie

Baroness Goldie remains Minister of State for Defence. 

On 26 July 2019, Baroness Goldie was selected as the spokesperson in the House of Lords for all defence-related matters; including ceremonial duties and European Union relations.

The Baroness was a life peer in the House of Lords from 2013, having been elected to Scottish Parliament in 1999, and leading the Scottish Conservatives from 2005 to 2011.

Baroness Goldie will now oversee matters of defence in the House of Lords, including Brexit-related issues (Picture: UK Parliament).

A Baroness in Waiting since 2016, she is also responsible for medallic recognition and community engagement, as well as arms control and export licensing.

Minister of State for the Armed Forces: James Heappey

Following Mr Quin's appointment as Minister for Defence Procurement, James Heappey MP has been named Armed Forces Minister.

The former Army officer takes over from Anne-Marie Trevelyan MP who has been appointed International Development Secretary.

Mr Heappey spent 10 years with the RIFLES and reached the rank of Major.

James Heappey MP official portrait 171219 CREDIT UK Parliament.jpg
Former Army Major James Heappey is the new Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Picture: UK Parliament).

He served in Iraq, Afghanistan, Northern Ireland and Kenya during his career, as well as working for the head of the Army in London.

Replacing Mrs Trevelyan, he will now be responsible for Armed Forces activity including operations, operational legal matters, force generation and international defence engagement.

Mr Heappey has consistently voted for the use of UK military forces in combat operations overseas, according to the voting records website TheyWorkForYou.com.

He has also voted against investigations into the Iraq War and in favour of replacing Trident with a new nuclear weapons system.

Mr Heappey has also consistently voted for military action against so-called Islamic State (Daesh).

Minister for Defence People and Veterans: Johnny Mercer

Having served as an Army officer for more than 10 years, Mr Mercer became part of a new effort from Mr Johnson to commit to the former military personnel across the UK. 

Two months after leaving the Army, he became the Tory candidate for Plymouth Moor View and was elected in 2015.

Johnny Mercer was elected as MP for Plymouth Moor View in 2015 (Picture: UK Parliament).

Mr Mercer is responsible for Armed Forces, veterans and civilian people policy.

As an MP, he has consistently voted for the use of UK military forces in overseas combat operations, and in favour of replacing Trident with a new weapons system.

He consistently voted for military action against so-called Islamic State, and voted against investigations into the Iraq War.

 

Who Goes?

Oliver Dowden

Oliver Dowden MP has been appointed Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport - leaving his role at the Office for Veterans' Affairs.

Anne-Marie Trevelyan 

Ms Trevelyan has been appointed as the new International Development Secretary.

The MP for Berwick-upon-Tweed was previously Minister of State for the Armed Forces.

Prior to that, she was the Minister for Defence Procurement from 27 July until 16 December 2019.

Voting records from TheyWorkForYou.com.

Cover image: Gov.uk