UK

Stephen Crabb, Welsh Secretary, Replaces Iain Duncan Smith As Work And Pensions Secretary

19/03/2016 10:30 GMT | Updated 19/03/2016 13:22 GMT

Welsh Secretary Stephen Crabb has been appointed the new Work and Pensions Secretary after Iain Duncan Smith's dramatic resignation last night.

The speedy appointment follows Mr Duncan Smith's decision to stand down last night, citing cuts to disability benefits in George Osborne's budget.

Isabel Infantes/EMPICS Entertainment
Stephen Crabb delivers speech at the Conservative Party annual conference last year

David Cameron said he was "puzzled and disappointed" by the decision, which keen observers of Westminster speculated had more to do with Mr Duncan Smith backing Britain leaving the EU.

Alun Cairns replaces Mr Crabb, 43, as Welsh Secretary.

A relative unknown, Mr Crabb has been MP for Preseli Pembrokeshire since 2005. 

He was previously a government whip and appointed Welsh Secretary in the July 2014 reshuffle.

Before Mr Crabb's appointment was announced, HuffPost UK's Paul Waugh said he would be "the perfect man to step in".

"He’s smart, passionate and has had such a tough upbringing that no one could claim he has a silver spoon in his mouth," Mr Waugh wrote.

"He’s also a devout Christian who could maintain the moral mission of his predecessor. Crucially, however, he’s a Eurosceptic ‘Inner’.

"That, for a PM fighting for his own political life over Europe, may matter more than anything."