David TC Davies reveals he rejected offer of Welsh Secretary job under Boris Johnson
David TC Davies has revealed he turned down the offer of the Welsh Secretary job during the final hours of Boris Johnson’s premiership.
The Monmouth MP, who was a junior minister in the Wales Office, rejected the approach from Mr Johnson just 24 hours before he resigned as PM in July.
Mr Davies told Newyddion S4C, that while the decision was “difficult”, he “wasn’t going to be the one to save” the Johnson government.
Mr Davies declined Mr Johnson’s offer on 6 July amid an unprecedented wave of ministerial resignations, including then Welsh Secretary Simon Hart.
Swindon MP Sir Robert Buckland subsequently agreed to replace Mr Hart because Mr Johnson had agreed to resign, but when Rishi Sunak was selected as the new leader of the Conservative Party in October, Mr Davies accepted the job.
Recalling the night before Mr Johnson stepped down on 7 July, Mr Davies said it was “inevitable the government was going to fall so it was important to accept that and not do anything that would sustain the government for a few more days”.
He told Newyddion that he had “been in discussion” with Mr Hart before he urged Mr Johnson to quit along with a group of ministers at Downing Street.
It was a “difficult” decision to turn down the job but it was “right,” Mr Davies added.
‘I made the right decision’
“I said, ‘under the circumstances, if Simon steps down, I won’t take the job’. Despite the temptation to take a place in the cabinet, for me it didn’t feel right to see Simon go on a point of principle and just take the job,” he said.
“Even had I done that, I’m sure the government would have fallen anyway, I wasn’t going to save it.
“I also felt that to do this job you’ve got to have the respect of stakeholders in Wakes, and how can I expect anyone to respect me if I’ve taken the job if no one else wants to do it.
“When I got the call from Downing Street, offering me the job, I said, unfortunately, I’m really sorry but I can’t do that. It was difficult, but I’m sure I made the right decision.”
The role was filled a day later by Sir Robert Buckland, who said that he only took the job because Mr Johnson had agreed to quit.
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