Rishi Sunak has hired James Forsyth, the Spectator’s political editor and a Times columnist, as his new political secretary.
The news was broken by The Times and the Spectator.
Forsyth will bolster Sunak’s key Downing Street team as the Prime Minister seeks to overcome a double-digit deficit in most election polls.
He is a long-standing friend of the Prime Minister and served as Sunak’s best man.
Sunak’s latest hire, highly respected across Westminster, is married to Allegra Stratton – the former broadcaster turned political operator who chose to resign over the partygate scandal under Boris Johnson.
Stratton remained for a long time the only individual to lose their job over the illicit Downing Street parties.
Sunak was facing pressure to beef up his Downing Street operation as both Conservative and Labour beef up their operations ahead of a general election.
The next poll of the country must be held by December 2024, though many are expecting it to come as soon as September of that year.
Sunak has been able to keep things relatively quiet in his first two months as he has focussed on putting out fires, however he may find 2023 troublesome as he is forced to make tough decisions. A backbench revolt has already scuppered his plans to enshrine a house building target in law and you can expect more U-turns now that unruly backbenchers whiff potential weakness.