Blair reshuffles Cabinet after poll drubbing | india | Hindustan Times
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Blair reshuffles Cabinet after poll drubbing

Deputy PM John Prescott and Home Secretary Charles Clarke were expected to be among the casualties of Labour's drubbing.

india Updated: May 05, 2006 16:16 IST

British Prime Minister Tony Blair launched a Cabinet reshuffle on Friday after his Labour Party suffered its worst defeat at the polls since he took power, officials said.

Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott and Home Secretary Charles Clarke were expected to be among the casualties of Labour's drubbing at the municipal council elections in England.

The reshuffle was expected to be far-ranging, with the new line-up due to be made public sometime during the day.

It could also give clues as to when Blair, who has been in power for nine years, will make good on his pledge to resign sometime during his current term to make way for his finance minister and right-hand man, Chancellor of the Exchequer Gordon Brown.

A Downing Street official confirmed the reshuffle to Britain's domestic Press Association news agency shortly after Prescott turned up at Blair's official residence in London to learn his fate.

Prescott said nothing when a reporter shouted to him: "Are you going to resign, Mr Prescott?"

Foreign Secretary Jack Straw was also seen walking through Downing Street's black front door, giving a thumb's up to door-stepping reporters.

Prescott, who as deputy prime minister has been directly in charge of housing and urban development, has been tainted by his admission of an extra marital affair with a secretary 24 years his junior.