The PM (centre) on Monday presented Esben Lunde Larsen as the new environment and food minister and Ulla Tørnæs as the new minister for higher education and research. Photo: Liselotte Sabroe/Scanpix
With Larsen now taking over as the environment and food minister, Ulla Tørnæs was named as the new minister for higher education and research. Tørnæs will end her stint as a member of the European Parliament to take the post, and current MP Morten Løkkegard will replace her in Brussels.
Løkkegard’s seat in Christiansborg will in turn be filled by former MP Jakob Engel-Schmidt.
The reshuffle was prompted after the Conservative People's Party, which has just six seats in parliament but whose support is crucial to Rasmussen's minority government, threatened to withdraw its backing if the premier did not sack Kjer Hansen.
The party said it had lost confidence in the minister in a row over agricultural reforms and after several days of bluster from both sides, she resigned on Saturday, saying she did not want to "stand in the way" of the government.
Rasmussen said he had "mixed feelings" about mixing up his cabinet.
"I have said goodbye to a very, very talented minister, who loyally and thoroughly lived up to the election promises main by not only the government but by the Conservatives and [fellow support party] the Danish People's Party. But it couldn't be avoided," he said when presenting his new team.