The new minister for disabled people, Justin Tomlinson, has an almost unblemished record for voting for the most harmful choices for disabled people, even where it involves taking money from terminally ill claimants.
Tomlinson replaced Sarah Newton as minister for disabled people, health and work last week following the latter’s Brexit-related resignation almost a month ago.
However, as a choice for champion of disabled people, it would be hard to do worse.
Whenever faced with an option which would make life harder for disabled people, Tomlinson can be relied upon to opt for it – even where it involves taking money from terminally ill cancer patients.
In the past, Tomlinson has:
voted to remove the "work-related activity component" from the Employment and Support Allowance.
voted to remove the "limited capability for work" element of Universal Credit.
voted not to increase the time people can receive contribution based ESA from one year to at least 730 days.
voted not to make an exception for those with a cancer diagnosis or undergoing cancer treatment from the 365 day limit on receiving contribution based Employment and Support Allowance.
Tomlinson has already served as parliamentary under-secretary of state for disabled people under David Cameron.
He becomes the fifth minister of state for disabled people in the past five years.
Previous incumbents have included:
- Mike Penning
- Mark Harper
- Penny Mordaunt
Looking on the bright side, with the current turmoil in parliament it is highly unlikely Tomlinson will last any longer than his predecessors in this post.