William Hague comments on Jeremy Corbyn’s reshuffle disaster:
Compared to the untimely death of David Bowie, the resignation of Catherine McKinnell as shadow attorney general on Monday morning could hardly make headline news. The average voter must in any case wonder just how devastating it can be for yet another person they have never heard of to resign from a position they didn’t know existed.
And yet, this was, to keen watchers of our democratic politics, a significant moment. For if a solid, middle-of-the-road, fairly ambitious newcomer opts to resign from the team just a few days after a reshuffle, that suggests it was a reshuffle that did not go at all well.
Reshuffles are dangerous moments for party leaders. When I was leader of the opposition, I planned their timing and content down to the smallest detail – and despite all my other mistakes, I managed to retire a whole generation of Tory leaders and unite their replacements without any reshuffle going awry. So at the risk of helping Jeremy Corbyn next time round I offer the basic rules of how to do a reshuffle.