Michael Gove Concedes Tory Election Disaster Could Lead To Softer Brexit

While serving as education secretary in 2013, Gove attempted to remove climate change as a required subject on the geography curriculum.

May is believed to have planned sweeping changes to her cabinet had she increased her majority, but given her weakened position following the election, she has been forced to keep changes to a minimum.

The new Environment Secretary, who has rejoined the Cabinet after being sacked by Theresa May a year ago, did not rule out calls for a commission into the deal that the Government should seek.

But, adds the journalist, a source close to the discussions at the time said there were attempts, not necessarily by Gove, not to "stress the human causes" of climate change as an attempt to placate the "right wing of the Conservative Party". The Cabinet reshuffle, which saw relatively few changes to the front bench, will largely have been created to shore-up support within May's own ranks after initial calls for her resignation were muted within the party.

Newly appointed environment secretary Michael Gove has come under scrutiny for his voting record in what is now his department.

The reshuffle follows a challenging weekend for the government as May scrambles to secure a "confidence and supply" deal with the socially conservative Democratic Unionist Party of Northern Ireland after falling nine seats short of a majority, securing 317 seats, with a resurgent Labour under Jeremy Corbyn winning 262 seats.

The pair had fallen out when they were the education and home secretaries respectively.

Green, the 61-year-old former work and pensions secretary, has also become minister for the cabinet office.

In a cabinet reshuffle, May promoted long-time friend and ally Damian Green to First Secretary of State - thus making him effectively her deputy.

But he denied all such claims as "tripe" and urged colleagues to "calm down and get behind the Prime Minister".

Asked about this, Mr Gove said ministers had to "reflect on what the election result told us about the way that people want to see the economy managed in the future".

"And as we enter Brexit negotiations, Gove's past suggestion we scrap vital European Union environmental protections becomes ever more concerning".

Mr Gove, who campaigned for the United Kingdom to leave the European Union, is thought to favour a deregulatory approach, having claimed during the EU referendum campaign that European legislation costs the United Kingdom economy up to £600 million per week.

Ms Leadsom, who also stood for leadership against Mrs May, was also given a promotion to the leader of the House of Commons.

  • Leroy Wright