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The former MP for Croydon Central is clever, personable, energetic, popular with former colleagues, and an experienced campaigner. ConservativeHome enjoyed hosting a session with him at the last Party Conference about his book: How to win a marginal seat.
He lost that marginal seat on Thursday, which is not at all an ideal springboard from which to leap to his new post. But it is a very solid appointment. We called this afternoon for Barwell to be recruited to Downing Street – and in goes. He will be a calming presence after the turbulent departure of Nick Timothy and Fiona Hill.