• Issue 38

  • Jul 2018

The Source

Nominative Determinism gets Malthouse a Job

In the fallout of cabinet ministers resigning left, right and centre, Kit Malthouse MP, has been appointed as 17th Housing Minister in just 20 years. In terms of those who have held the title since the Conservatives came to government, he becomes the 8th Housing Minister since 2010 and follows hot on the heels of:

  • January 2018 to July 2018: Dominic Raab
  • June 2017 to January 2018: Alok Sharma
  • July 2016 to June 2017: Gavin Barwell
  • July 2014 to July 2016: Brandon Lewis
  • October 2013 to July 2014: Kris Hopkins
  • September 2012 to October 2013: Mark Prisk
  • May 2010 to September 2012: Grant Shapps

Such relatively short tenures generally reflect their impotence in the face of the worst housing crisis to hit this country in 60 years. The merry-go-round of ministers would have no opportunity to develop coherent policies to address the housing problems faced by this country and to pick up and run with the baton left by their predecessor.

The previous appointment of Dominic Raab just six months ago, coincided with the new Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) replacing the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG), which aimed to demonstrate the government’s emphasis on the housing crisis.

However, the Secretary of State, Sajid Javid, left the department just 4 months later, whilst housing policy appears to fall further down the agenda as the government continues to get bogged down in Brexit. As the light at the end of the tunnel looks increasingly like a train, a General Election in 2018 becomes ever more likely, which will inevitably bring about a ninth Housing Minister in eight years.

Like his predecessor, Mr Malthouse has no background in housing policy, so it’s understandable why some are upset with the job’s revolving door.