Tweet from Skye, Lochaber and Badenoch MSP Kate Forbes goes viral after sparking amusement with her pithy response to the resignation of UK Chancellor Sajid Javid in Prime Minister Boris Johnson's cabinet reshuffle
A HIGHLAND MSP’s tongue in cheek response to news of the UK Chancellor’s resignation has gone viral - and sparked merriment online with its ‘mic-drop’-style putdown.
Kate Forbes, who represents the Skye, Lochaber and Badenoch constituency, was reacting to this morning’s shock announcement that Sajid Javid had resigned during Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s cabinet reshuffle.
Despite Downing Street correspondents receiving briefings from Johnson allies last night claiming that the reshuffle would be “boring”, this morning’s shock announcement was anything but - and signalled the culmination of behind the scenes tension between Mr Javid and Johnson’s unelected adviser Dominic Cummings.
It is understood that No10 wanted the Chancellor to axe all of his policy advisers and operate with a shared team of joint PM/Chancellor staff.
Mr Javid refused and fell on his sword rather than agree to the plan.
The move followed months of bad blood between Mr Javid and Mr Cummings, which began when the latter summarily fired treasury adviser Sonia Khan and had her marched from Downing Street by police without consulting the Chancellor first.
The vacant Chancellor role has already been filled by MP Rishi Sunak, who now has just three weeks to draw up the next UK Budget.
Ms Forbes is no stranger to having to deliver budgets to tight deadlines after she gave this year’s Scottish Budget speech with just a handful of hours’ notice.
The Deputy Cabinet Secretary for Finance, she had to stand in for the then Finance Secretary Derek Mackay on February 6, when he resigned only hours before the statement after it emerged he had sent hundreds of messages to a 16-year-old boy.
Ms Forbes won praise for her performance in the Holyrood chamber - earning plaudits from across the political divide for her composure despite the extremely short time window between Mackay’s resignation and the budget statement.
So, when news broke that there would be a new Chancellor and they’d have less than a month to prepare, her response lit up Twitter feeds.
She retweeted a message from BBC Newsnight's policy editor, Lewis Goodall, which read: “BREAK: Sajid Javid has resigned. A budget is due in less than a month. He becomes the shortest serving Chancellor since Iain Macleod (who died in office). This reshuffle just got a lot more interesting”.
And in a pithy comment which was labelled 'top trolling' by some online, Ms Forbes gave the reaction: “Need a hand with the budget? #HappyToHelp”
It won immediate fans across the web, with more than 2300 likes and almost 500 retweets less than two hours after it was posted.