News, Culture & Society

May heads off on holiday to Wales leaving Tory rivals to fight

Dominic Raab 10/1

Age: 46. Former Brexit Secretary. Diehard Brexiteer.

Background: Son of a Czech-born Jewish refugee who fled the Nazis in 1938 and died of cancer when Raab was 12.

EXPERIENCE: Lasted only four months as Brexit Secretary. Voted against May in leadership confidence vote.

STRENGTH: Skilled debater who honed his skills as an adversarial lawyer with blue chip legal firm Linklaters.

WEAKNESS: Seen as too clever by half and lacking people skills.

VERDICT: In second place in ConservativeHome’s leadership league table.

Boris Johnson 4/1

Age: 54. Former Foreign Secretary. His support for Brexit was vital to Leave’s win.

Background: Known for being identified by just one name, Boris, for his show-off Classics references and for chaotic private life.

EXPERIENCE: Twice voted London mayor.

STRENGTH: Starry, charismatic and clever crowd-pleaser.

WEAKNESS: Bumbling foreign secretary. May struggle to win MPs’ support. A ‘Stop Boris’ campaign is likely.

VERDICT: Party grassroots love him and he’s top of the ConservativeHome league table by 12 points.

Matt Hancock 12/1

Age: 40. Health Secretary. Arch Remainer.

Background: Father bought their council house. Ran his own computer software business before becoming Chancellor George Osborne’s chief of staff.

EXPERIENCE: Cabinet minister for only 18 months. Seen as a ‘coming man’.

STRENGTH: One of life’s Tiggers with ambition and enthusiasm to match his brainpower.

WEAKNESS: Never knowingly modest, he once foolishly likened himself to Churchill, Pitt and Disraeli.

VERDICT: Little known among Conservative Party members.

Amber Rudd 25/1

Age: 55. Work and Pensions Secretary. Remain cheerleader.

Background: Daughter of a Labour-supporting stockbroker and Tory-leaning JP.

EXPERIENCE: Became Home Secretary after just six years as an MP. Resigned over the Windrush scandal after inadvertently misleading MPs.

STRENGTH: Tough operator who was restored to Cabinet within six months.

WEAKNESS: Holds seat with majority of only 346. Headmisstressy manner but an accomplished performer.

VERDICT: Ninth in leadership league table.

Esther McVey 33/1 

Age: 51. Former Welfare Secretary. An ardent Brexiteer.

Background: Spent the first two years of her life in foster care. Was a breakfast TV presenter before becoming a Tory MP on Merseyside.

EXPERIENCE: As welfare minister was viciously targeted by Labour.

STRENGTH: Tough and telegenic. Won plaudits with members for resigning from Cabinet over Brexit deal.

WEAKNESS: Some say she doesn’t have the intellectual fire power for top job.

VERDICT: Ranked 14th in league table.

Penny Mordaunt 33/1

Age: 46. International Development Secretary. Arch Brexiteer.

Background: Her mother died when she was a teenager. Cared for younger brother. EXPERIENCE: Was a magician’s assistant. Appeared in the reality TV show Splash!

STRENGTH: Only female MP to be a Royal Naval Reservist. Attended Lady Thatcher’s funeral in uniform.

WEAKNESS: Inexperienced, having been in Cabinet for less than two years. Has never run a major Whitehall department.

VERDICT: Edged up to 11th in ConservativeHome league table.

Andrea Leadsom 16/1

Age: 55. Leader of the Commons. Ardent Brexiteer.

Background: A former City trader. Mother of three.

EXPERIENCE: Struggled in her first Cabinet post, as Environment Secretary.

STRENGTH: Blossomed as Leader of the Commons, winning plaudits for taking on Speaker John Bercow.

WEAKNESS: Stood for leader in 2016 but made ill-considered comment comparing her experience as a mother to the childless Mrs May.

VERDICT: Has soared to the top of the ConservativeHome table of competent ministers.

Michael Gove 4/1

Age: 51. Environment Secretary. High priest of Brexiteers.

Background: Adopted son of a Scottish fish merchant.

EXPERIENCE: Figurehead for Leave during referendum campaign. Cabinet heavyweight who’s served as Education Secretary and Justice Secretary.

STRENGTH: Brilliant debater with razor sharp intellect.

WEAKNESS: Still suspected of having a disloyal gene after knifing Boris Johnson in last leadership contest.

VERDICT: Popular with the Tory members, who, crucially, will vote for the new leader.

Gavin Williamson 50/1

Age: 42. Defence Secretary. Converted Remainer.

Background: From a Labour-supporting, working class family. Ran a pottery firm before becoming an MP.

EXPERIENCE: Started his rise as Mrs May’s Chief Whip. Leap-frogged experienced colleagues to land defence job.

STRENGTH: Matinee idol looks and knack for self-promotion.

WEAKNESS: Military chiefs nicknamed him Private Pike after Dad’s Army character. Suggested missiles should be fitted to tractors.

VERDICT: In 19th place in league table.

Liz Truss 50/1

Age: 43 Chief Secretary to Treasury. Brexiteer.

Background: Raised by Left-wing parents and as a child was marched through the streets on anti-Thatcher protest shouting: ‘Maggie out!’

EXPERIENCE: Joint-author in 2012 of a controversial booklet, Britannia Unchained, which alleged ‘the British are among the worst idlers in the world’.

STRENGTH: A genuine free-marketeer.

WEAKNESS: Poor public speaker with a mixed ministerial record.

VERDICT: Only 15th in ConservativeHome leaders league table.

Sajid Javid 9/1

Age: 49. Home Secretary. Remainer who changed to Brexit after the referendum.

Background: Son of a bus driver who came to Britain from Pakistan with £1 in his pocket. Was head of credit trading at Deutsche Bank.

EXPERIENCE: Previously Culture and Business secretary, cracked down on union rights.

STRENGTH: An extraordinary rags-to-riches back story that we will hear more of during the leadership campaign.

WEAKNESS: Widely seen as a wooden and a poor speaker.

VERDICT: In 4th place in ConservativeHome league table.

Jeremy Hunt 8/1 

Age: 52. Foreign Secretary

Background: Eldest son of Admiral Sir Nicholas Hunt. Married to a Chinese wife and he speaks Mandarin.

Before politics, set up an educational publisher which was sold for £30million in 2017.

EXPERIENCE: Longest-serving health secretary in history.

STRENGTH: Among the most experienced ministers in the field who, unusually, has made few political enemies.

WEAKNESS: Some, though, regard him as a ‘bit of a drip’.

Verdict: Seen by many as man who could best unite party on Brexit.

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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