Project Brexit

Robin Walker MP

Parliamentary Under Secretary of State, Department for Exiting the European Union

Robin Walker took the iconic seat of Worcester (home of the supposed swing-voter ‘Worcester Woman’) from Labour in 2010 and established a comfortable majority in 2015 and previously worked in financial public relations in the City of London.

His rise has been steady, initially focusing on business issues: he served on the Business, Innovation and Skills Select Committee and campaigned in favour of credit unions. Shortly before the 2015 election, Walker was appointed as PPS at the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs before moving across to the Department for Education.

Robin Walker is one of three junior Ministers at the Department for Exiting the European Union (DfEEU). Whilst his colleagues David Davis and David Jones were keen leavers, Walker was a vocal remain supporter. Indeed, the suspicion is that Walker – also an early supporter of Theresa May for Conservative leader – has been placed in the new Department to moderate his Secretary of State.

If so, this presents an added burden to an already difficult job. The DfEEU is the first task-specific Department ever set up in peacetime; and Walker will be part of a Ministerial team trying to achieve the best possible deal for the UK out of negotiations with the other 27 EU member states, all with their own electorates to satisfy. He will work closely with the Foreign & Commonwealth Office and the Department for International Trade, along with satisfying a divided Conservative Party. If he manages this task well, Walker could be marked for greater offices of state.

Key policy priorities

  • Balancing different (and sometimes competing) priorities and concerns to ensure that Brexit negotiations satisfy as many different groups as possible
  • Building relationships with related Government Departments to ensure a co-ordinated approach to Brexit negotiations
  • Being the voice of the 48% of voted to remain within the Government Department set up to manage leaving the EU

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