Will Quince: who is Tory MP, what did he say on Twitter, government resignation u-turn and new role explained
Will Quince has rejoined Boris Johnson’s reshuffled cabinet alongside James Cleverly as Education Secretary
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His resignation lasted just 24-hours, before he agreed to return to his old job after the Prime Minister resigned on 7 July.
Johnson will stay on as PM in a caretaker role until the Conservative Party leadership race appoints a successor.
Quince handed in his notice after stating he had “no choice” but to resign after he was given “inaccurate” information.
On Monday (4 July), the minister gave an interview where he reassured the public that he had been given “categorical assurance” that Johnson did not know of any “specific” allegations against Pincher.
However, this turned out to be inaccurate, with the PM aware of allegations spanning back to 2019.
Here is everything you need to know about who Will Quince is and why he has rejoined the cabinet.
Who is Will Quince?
Will Quince is a Conservative MP for Colchester, serving the constituency since May 2015.
He was appointed as the children’s minister in September 2021, after previously working in the Department for Work and Pensions.
Why did Will Quince resign?
Quince announced his resignation on Twitter, where he explained he had to offer his resignation after he was given inaccurate information about the PM.
He tweeted: “With great sadness and regret, I have this morning tendered my resignation to the Prime Minister after I accepted and repeated assurances on Monday to the media which have now been found to be inaccurate.”
On Monday (4 July), Quince had conducted interviews defending Johnson in the Pincher scandal.
He reassured the public that he had been given “categorical assurance” that Johnson did not know of any “specific” allegations against the former chief whip.
However, this information turned out to be incorrect, with the PM admitting on 5 July that he had received a briefing after an investigation into Pincher’s behaviour.
What did Will Quince say in his resignation letter?
In Quince’s resignation letter he touched on the inaccurate information he had been given, which he had shared to support Johnson with.
He explained that he felt he “had no choice,” and that he had “accepted and repeated those assurances in good faith.”
Here is Quince’s resignation letter in full:
“Dear Prime Minister. Thank you for meeting with me yesterday evening and for your sincere apology regarding the briefings I received from No 10 ahead of Monday’s media round, which we now know to be inaccurate.
“It is with great sadness and regret that I feel that I have no choice but to tender my resignation as minister for children and families as I accepted and repeated those assurances in good faith.
“It has been an honour to serve in government since 2019 at both the Department for Work and Pensions and the Department for Education.
“Reaching this decision has not been easy. Stepping away from a job I love, where we are working every day to improve the life chances of vulnerable and disadvantaged children and young people up and down our country, pains me greatly.
“I will miss it hugely but pledge to do all I can to continue this important work from the backbenches.
“I would like to take this opportunity to put on record my sincere thanks to the hundreds of dedicated and hard-working civil servants with whom it has been a pleasure to work.”
What is his new role?
It’s almost like he was never away, as 24 hours later, Quince is back as the Children’s Minister.
He has not yet commented on reprising the role.
Johnson has been reshuffling his cabinet to fill some of the vacant positions that came about as a result of the mass resignations.
Other newly appointed ministers include James Cleverly as the Education Minister, the third to be appointed in just one week.
The PM who is playing a caretaker role whilst a new successor is secured, has been criticised by Conservatives who want him to step down.
Former Prime Minister John Major has suggested it would be better for Dominic Raab to take over as acting PM.
On 7 July, Downing Street issued a statement where they “made clear the government would not seek to implement new policies or make major changes of direction.”