What do Foreign Office ministers think about the possibility that Andrew Lansley could be the next European Commissioner? David Lidington was clearly intrigued by Isabel’s column in the Telegraph this morning which says that Tory backbenchers are not fans at all. The Europe Minister, who would have to work closely with Lansley, retweeted the article with the headline ‘the mysterious Mr Lansley will hardly set Brussels alight’. He then realised that this might not look very good, and tweeted:
‘Apologies. Was trying to read last article not retweet it. Retweet def not my view.’
Presumably he doesn’t mean that he does think Lansley will set Brussels on fire?
Of course, Lidington is probably also reading Martin Callanan’s column on ConHome and wondering whether he could become a late entry into a contest reserved almost exclusively for those who’ve run out of road in their current careers. And he’s probably also keeping an eye on the polls for the Newark by-election, as a very poor performance could put paid to Lansley’s ambitions if the Prime Minister decides that another by-election in a formerly safe Tory seat will be too bruising. Currently it’s looking good, though, so Lansley might want to start packing his cases.