LONDON (Reuters) - With her Conservative Party split over Brexit, British Prime Minister Theresa May will have to be careful to preserve the uneasy balance in the cabinet after the resignation of Home Secretary Amber Rudd.
Rudd was one of the strongest pro-EU voices in the PM May’s cabinet. Who could May appoint in her place? Following are the possible contenders.
* Former Secretary of State for Northern Ireland James Brokenshire - A remainer
Brokenshire, 50, resigned in January for surgery after being diagnosed with lung cancer. He was Northern Irish minister from 2016 until his resignation and has served as immigration minister. He is well respected but it might be too early after his recovery to take a demanding ministerial post.
* Minister of State for Security and Economic Crime Ben Wallace - A remainer
Wallace, 47, a former platoon commander in the Scots Guards, was appointed in July 2016. He previously worked in the Northern Ireland Office and was a government whip from 2014 to 2015.
* Minister for the Cabinet Office David Lidington - A remainer
Lidington, 61, was minister for Europe under former Prime Minister David Cameron. He was appointed to the Cabinet Office in 2018.
* Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Michael Gove - A Brexiteer
Gove, 50, was one of the leading campaigners for Brexit but is notorious for undermining Boris Johnson’s bid for the Conservative leadership in the turmoil which followed the 2016 Brexit vote.
* Secretary of State for Health and Social Care Jeremy Hunt - A remainer who now supports Brexit
Hunt, 51, has faced criticism from opposition lawmakers and some doctors for his management of the National Health Service.
* Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government Sajid Javid - A campaigner for remain even though his ‘heart’ was for Brexit
Javid, 48, a former managing director at Deutsche Bank, served as Business Secretary under former Prime Minister David Cameron. He was appointed Communities and Local Government Secretary by May in 2016.
* Northern Irish Secretary Karen Bradley - A remainer
Bradley, 48, a former manager at KPMG and close ally of May, was appointed Northern Irish Secretary in 2018. Previously, she served as Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport where she oversaw the referral of Rupert Murdoch’s attempt to buy the rest of Sky to regulators.
Reporting by Guy Faulconbridge, Editing by William Maclean