The out-of-touch Tory back-bencher’s political stock has risen in recent weeks.
Last summer, the North East Somerset MP Jacob Rees-Mogg was seriously talked about as a future leader of the Conservative Party, a feature of British politics that has not gone away. He has since become a nationally-recognised figure and is now Chair of the European Research Group.
Here are six things you need to know about the man being discussed as a possible future Tory leader – and prime minister.
1st – He is a relatively new MP
Rees-Mogg has only been in parliament since 2010, first winning the seat of North East Somerset with 41.3% of the vote. At the 2015 election, he increased his majority and secured 49.8%, following which two years later he took the seat with 53.6%.
2nd – He once to be an MP in Scotland
Before his win in 2010, Ress-Mogg stood in the 2001 election in the Wrekin and lost, but four years previously he stood in the Scottish seat of Central Fife against Labour’s Henry McLeish, who went on to serve as Scotland’s second first minister, as well as the SNP’s Tricia Marwick, who served as the Scottish Parliament’s presiding officer between 2011 and 2016. The Independent wrote a piece on him in Central Fife back in 1997, which can be read here.
3rd – He is now the favourite Conservative to replace May
According to Oddschecker, Jacob Rees-Mogg is the favourite Conservative to replace Theresa May as prime minister. He is only beaten by Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn. Despite not being in the cabinet – let alone being a cabinet big beast – Rees-Mogg beats Boris Johnson, Amber Rudd, Michael Gove and David Davis.
4th – He has generally voted against motions to improve equality and human rights
5th – He has also persistently voted against same-sex marriage
TheyWorkForYou also highlights that Rees-Mogg has always voted against same-sex marriage whenever it has come up. During the Cameron-Clegg coalition, he was one of a significant minority of Conservative MPs to oppose same-sex marriage.
6th – His father
Jacob Rees-Mogg’s father was William Rees-Mogg, who like his son attended Oxford. William Rees-Mogg went into a career in journalism and eventually became a life peer.