NEWLY appointed Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden wrote a pro-Union column on Burns Night, using the poet's words to lay out his opposition to Scottish independence

Dowden, the former deputy chief of staff for David Cameron, wrote for the Press and Journal on January 25 in an effort to promote the Union. 

He finished off the article by quoting the patriotic bard, who famously sang and wrote about his opposition to the Union of 1707. 

After visiting Scotland's north east, Cabinet Office Minister Dowden - who in 2013 featured on The Telegraph's list of the country's top 100 most influential right-wingers - wrote: "Everyone I spoke to in Aberdeen said they want unity and stability. They want politicians to get on with running the country – not more arguments about independence.

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"They emphasised the importance of that to their business. 2020 should be a year of unity and growth, the start of the decade of renewal, not more unproductive division and disruption.

"So as we remember Rabbie Burns tonight, I’ll be thinking of these words of his: 'Be Britain still to Britain true, among ourselves united' – and looking forward to a bright future ahead."

Dowden has also consistently voted against devolving more powers to the Scottish Parliament since becoming an MP in 2015.

The Tory MP for Hertsmere replaces Nicky Morgan as Digital, Media, Culture and Sport Secretary.

A number of high-profile Cabinet members have lost their jobs in today's reshuffle, including Esther McVey and Andrea Leadsom.

Chancellor Sajid Javid stepped down from his role after refusing to allow his advisers to report directly to Boris Johnson's adviser Dominic Cummings.