Caxton House, London. Photo: Paul Billanie for Welfare Weekly.

Theresa May has appointed David Gauke MP as the new Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, replacing Damian Green who has been promoted to First Secretary of State and Minister for the Cabinet Office.

Mr Gauke has been the Conservative member of parliament for South West Hertfordshire since 2005.

Prior to being appointed Work and Pensions Secretary, Mr Gauke was The Chief Secretary to the Treasury and includes Child Benefit among his many interests.

His past voting record will provide little comfort to people who have been affected by years of cuts to social security benefits, because he has almost always towed the party-line in relation to welfare changes.

A quick look at his voting record on reveals a worrying history of support for cuts to housing benefit, disability benefits, council tax support, and the refusal to use public spending to create guaranteed jobs for young people.

According to the website, David Gauke:

“Generally voted for reducing housing benefit for social tenants deemed to have excess bedrooms (‘bedroom tax’).

“Consistently voted against raising welfare benefits at least in line with prices.

“Almost always voted against paying higher benefits over longer periods for those unable to work due to illness or disability.

“Consistently voted for making local councils responsible for helping those in financial need afford their council tax and reducing the amount spent on such support.

“Almost always voted for a reduction in spending on welfare benefits.

“Consistently voted against spending public money to create guaranteed jobs for young people who have spent a long time unemployed.”

You can find out more about David Gauke’s voting record at