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David Michael Gauke MP (/ɡɔːk/; born 8 October 1971) is a British politician and solicitor who has been the Member of Parliament (MP) for South West Hertfordshire since 2005. He served in the Cabinet under Theresa May, most notably as Secretary of State for Justice and Lord Chancellor from 2018 to 2019. First elected as a Conservative, Gauke had the Conservative whip removed on 3 September 2019 and currently sits as an independent politician.


David Gauke

Official portrait of Mr David Gauke crop 2.jpg
Secretary of State for Justice
Lord Chancellor
In office
8 January 2018 – 24 July 2019
Prime MinisterTheresa May
Preceded byDavid Lidington
Succeeded byRobert Buckland
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
In office
11 June 2017 – 8 January 2018
Prime MinisterTheresa May
Preceded byDamian Green
Succeeded byEsther McVey
Chief Secretary to the Treasury
In office
14 July 2016 – 11 June 2017
Prime MinisterTheresa May
Preceded byGreg Hands
Succeeded byElizabeth Truss
Financial Secretary to the Treasury
In office
15 July 2014 – 14 July 2016
Prime MinisterDavid Cameron
Preceded byNicky Morgan
Succeeded byJane Ellison
Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury
In office
13 May 2010 – 15 July 2014
Prime MinisterDavid Cameron
Preceded bySarah McCarthy-Fry
Succeeded byPriti Patel
Member of Parliament
for South West Hertfordshire
Assumed office
5 May 2005
Preceded byRichard Page
Majority19,550 (32.2%)
Personal details
Born
David Michael Gauke

(1971-10-08) 8 October 1971 (age 47)
Ipswich, Suffolk, England
Political partyIndependent (2019–present)
Other political
affiliations
Conservative (until 2019)
Spouse(s)Rachel Gauke
Children3
Alma materSt Edmund Hall, Oxford
University of Law
WebsiteOfficial website

Gauke served in the Cameron Government as Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury from 2010 to 2014 and Financial Secretary to the Treasury from 2014 to 2016. During the formation of the May Government in July 2016, he was appointed to the Cabinet as Chief Secretary to the Treasury, where he remained until being appointed Secretary of State for Work and Pensions in 2017. Gauke was appointed Secretary of State for Justice and Lord Chancellor in January 2018.[1] He resigned on 24 July 2019 following the Conservative Party leadership election.

Contents

Early life and careerEdit

Gauke was educated at Northgate High School in Ipswich, Suffolk before attending St Edmund Hall, Oxford where he was awarded a Bachelor of Arts degree in law in 1993, and the College of Law in Chester where he graduated in legal practice in 1995.


In 1993, he was a researcher for Barry Legg, the Conservative MP for Milton Keynes South West. He worked as a trainee solicitor with Richards Butler from 1995, being admitted as a solicitor in 1997. From 1999 to 2005, he was a solicitor in the financial services group at Macfarlanes,[2] a corporate law firm.

Gauke was elected as the vice-chairman of the Brent East Conservative Association for two years from 1998, and contested the seat at the 2001 general election finishing in second place 13,047 votes behind the Labour MP Paul Daisley.

Parliamentary careerEdit

Gauke was elected to the House of Commons at the 2005 general election for Hertfordshire South West following the retirement of Richard Page. Gauke won the seat with a majority of 8,473, making his maiden speech on 9 June 2005.[3] Between 2005 and 2008, he served as a member of the Procedure Select Committee. He was a member of the Treasury Select Committee between 2006 and 2007, before joining the Opposition front bench as Shadow Treasury Minister.

Following his re-election at the 2010 general election, he was appointed Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury.

In December 2013, Gauke was reported to HM Revenue and Customs after advertising an unpaid six-month "training post" at his constituency office in Rickmansworth, Hertfordshire.[4]

On 13 July 2016, Gauke was made a member of the Privy Council[5] and given the title The Right Honourable.

On 14 July 2016, Gauke was made Chief Secretary to the Treasury as part of Theresa May's ministry. On 11 June 2017, he was made Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, having previously only worked in the Treasury.

On 8 January 2018, Gauke succeeded David Lidington as Secretary of State for Justice and Lord Chancellor.[6] He is the first solicitor to have held the post.[1]

On 8 June 2019, following Gauke's "refusal to enact the commitments made in the Conservative manifesto"[7] and his supporting the leadership candidacy of Rory Stewart in favour of persisting with May's withdrawal agreement, his constituency association wrote to all members calling a special meeting for a vote of no-confidence.[8][9]

On 19 June 2019, The Times reported that "the conduct of Gauke was described as 'reprehensible' by the judge" in an employment tribunal case brought by a Mr Ben Plaistow.[10]

On 20 July 2019, Gauke confirmed to The Sunday Times that he would resign as Secretary of State after Prime Minister's Questions on 24 July 2019, citing that he could not serve Boris Johnson as Prime Minister and run the risk of pursuing a no-deal exit from the European Union.[11][better source needed]

ExpensesEdit

Gauke claimed £10,248.32 in stamp duty and fees involved in the purchase of his second home in London, a flat. A Channel 4 Dispatches programme revealed that he was claiming expenses on the flat in central London despite having a property located only one hour away on public transport.

Gauke sold the flat in August 2012, keeping £27,000, the property price having increased by £67,000 since purchase. He paid nearly £40,000 of this to the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (IPSA) as MPs only have to pay back any profit made in the previous two years.[12]

He told the British public that negotiating a price discount with tradesmen for paying in cash for the purposes of evading tax is morally wrong.[13]

Sitting as an independentEdit

On 3 September 2019, Gauke joined 20 other rebel Conservative MPs to vote against the Conservative government of Boris Johnson.[14] The rebel MPs voted with the Opposition against a Conservative motion which subsequently failed. Effectively, they helped block Johnson's "no deal" Brexit plan from proceding on 31 October.[15] Subsequently, all 21 were advised that they had lost the Conservative "whip",[16] expelling them as Conservative MPs, requiring them to sit as independents.[17] [18] If they decided to run for re-election in a future election, the Party would block their selection as Conservative candidates.[19]

Personal lifeEdit

Gauke is married to Rachel, who is a professional support lawyer specialising in corporate tax at legal research provider LexisNexis.[20] They have three sons and live in Chorleywood in Hertfordshire.[21] He is a lifelong supporter of Ipswich Town F.C.[22]

Styles of addressEdit

  • 1971–2005: Mr David Michael Gauke
  • 2005–2016: Mr David Michael Gauke MP
  • 2016–present: The Rt Hon David Michael Gauke MP

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b Cross, Michael (8 January 2018). "Gauke named as first solicitor lord chancellor". Law Society Gazette. Retrieved 9 January 2018.
  2. ^ Your fate in their hands, Legal Week, 18 November 2004
  3. ^ House of Commons Debates for 9 June 2005 UK Parliament
  4. ^ Gil, Natalie. "Minister reported to own department for advertising unpaid post in his office". The Guardian. Retrieved 26 December 2013.
  5. ^ Government of the United Kingdom (13 July 2016), Privy Council appointments: Arlene Foster, Ruth Davidson, David Gauke and Ed Vaizey, retrieved 16 July 2016
  6. ^ "David Gauke moves from work and pensions to become justice secretary". The Guardian. 8 January 2018. Retrieved 8 January 2018.
  7. ^ "Gauke No Confidence Notice Sent Out -". Guido Fawkes. 8 June 2019. Retrieved 8 June 2019.
  8. ^ "Tory leadership hopeful Rory Stewart: I have enough MPs' support to get to first round". CityAM. 7 June 2019. Retrieved 8 June 2019.
  9. ^ "MP faces confidence motion from Conservative association - and his two-word response over influence claim". Watford Observer. Retrieved 8 June 2019.
  10. ^ "Justice secretary David Gauke treated employment tribunal with 'contempt'". The Times. Retrieved 19 June 2019.
  11. ^ Shipman, Tim (20 July 2019). "BREAKING: David Gauke tonight confirms that he will resign from the cabinet next Wednesday after PMQs because he can't serve Boris Johnson while he pursues no deal. Tells the Sunday Times he fears it would lead to national "humiliation"". @ShippersUnbound. Retrieved 16 August 2019.
  12. ^ Claire Newell,Holly Watt and Christopher Hope (16 November 2012). "Minister in cash row keeps £27,000 profit from sale of second home". DailyTelegraph.co.uk.
  13. ^ "Paying tradesmen cash in hand morally wrong, says minister". BBC News. BBC. 24 July 2012. Retrieved 25 July 2012.
  14. ^ https://www.theguardian.com/politics/live/2019/sep/03/commons-showdown-looms-in-battle-over-no-deal-brexit-live?page=with:block-5d6ed2f58f0845a5dab7cc88#block-5d6ed2f58f0845a5dab7cc88, MPs back move to allow bill to block no-deal Brexit by majority of 27
  15. ^ https://www.telegraph.co.uk/politics/2019/09/04/parliament-whip-removed/, Boris Johnson to strip 21 Tory MPs of the Tory whip in parliamentary bloodbath
  16. ^ "What is removing the whip, filibustering and other Brexit jargon?". BBC Newsbeat. 4 September 2019. Retrieved 4 September 2019.
  17. ^ "Whips". Parliament.uk. Retrieved 4 September 2019.
  18. ^ "Boris Johnson to seek election after rebel Tories deliver Commons defeat". Retrieved 4 September 2019.
  19. ^ https://www.telegraph.co.uk/politics/2019/09/04/parliament-whip-removed/, Boris Johnson to strip 21 Tory MPs of the Tory whip in parliamentary bloodbath
  20. ^ Biography of Rachel Gauke, LexisWeb.co.uk
  21. ^ "Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury: David Gauke MP". HM Treasury. Retrieved 17 January 2011.
  22. ^ Biography of David Gauke, conservatives.com

External linksEdit

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Richard Page
Member of Parliament
for South West Hertfordshire

2005–present
Incumbent
Political offices
Preceded by
Sarah McCarthy-Fry
Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury
2010–2014
Succeeded by
Priti Patel
Preceded by
Nicky Morgan
Financial Secretary to the Treasury
2014–2016
Succeeded by
Jane Ellison
Preceded by
Greg Hands
Chief Secretary to the Treasury
2016–2017
Succeeded by
Liz Truss
Preceded by
Damian Green
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
2017–2018
Succeeded by
Esther McVey
Preceded by
David Lidington
Secretary of State for Justice
2018–2019
Succeeded by
Robert Buckland
Lord High Chancellor of Great Britain
2018–2019