The latest Cabinet league table is pasted above. Here’s the usual set of bullet-points:
- Osborne ascendant. The Chancellor returns to the exalted position he last occupied in October last year. His rating has improved by 2 points since last month, overtaking Iain Duncan Smith’s which has declined by 4.5 points.
- Javid remains in the top five.To be honest, many of the scores in this month’s table are rather underwhelming. The Culture Secretary’s, which has fallen by 9 points since last month, is no exception. But he does remain in the top five. Since first entering the Cabinet last June, he’s been one of our most buoyant performers.
- May’s decline… Theresa May’s extended dive continues. In June of last year, she was top of the league table with a rating of 84.1. Now she’s tenth with a rating that is exactly 30 points lower. Could this be because the continued leadership speculation has affected people’s perceptions of her in a way that it hasn’t for, say, Boris? Or is it more to do with her actual policies, such as the abortive (and stupid) attempt to limit student immigration?
- …and Fallon’s. The Defence Secretary’s rating provokes another round of questions. Why has he dropped 15.1 points and five places since last month? I can’t think of any particular thing that would explain it, unless it’s general disgruntlement at Britain’s response to ISIS, or something. This is one of the limitations of the league table: it gives the whats, but not the whys.
- The Negative Club. A new phenomenon took hold towards the end of last year: the five Lib Dems who aren’t Danny Alexander started filling the bottom five places in the table. But now further ignominy has been slathered onto them: for the first time, they all have negative ratings. Welcome to the Negative Club.