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Millionaire Jeremy Hunt clashes with BBC’s Jeremy Vine over how rich he is

Jeremy Hunt declared yesterday that he is proud to be a multi-millionaire.

The Tory leadership hopeful was responding to a suggestion by BBC Radio 2 presenter Jeremy Vine that he is the richest member of the Cabinet.

It came as Mr Hunt’s campaign gathered momentum, winning the support of fellow Cabinet ministers Rory Stewart and Damian Hinds, and Scottish Tory leader Ruth Davidson.

The Foreign Secretary will today announce that if he becomes prime minister, young people who start businesses and employ staff will have their tuition fee debt waived.

Mr Hunt made £14million after selling his educational course listings business Hotcourses two years ago.

Jeremy Hunt declared yesterday that he is proud to be a multi-millionaire. The Tory leadership hopeful was responding to a suggestion by BBC Radio 2 presenter Jeremy Vine that he is the richest member of the Cabinet

Mr Hunt made £14million after selling his educational course listings business Hotcourses two years ago. Above,  he enjoyed a posh strawberry milkshake while campaigning in Essex yesterday morning

Mr Hunt made £14million after selling his educational course listings business Hotcourses two years ago. Above,  he enjoyed a posh strawberry milkshake while campaigning in Essex yesterday morning

Defending his wealth on Radio 2 yesterday, he said: ‘I don’t think we should be going into the politics of envy.’

Asked by Mr Vine – one of the BBC’s highest-paid presenters – how much he was worth, Mr Hunt said: ‘Hang on. My salary when I was running my business was far lower than your salary, if I may say.’

Mr Vine earned between £440,000 and £450,000 last year for his work on Radio 2 and the game show Eggheads.

Two years ago, it was revealed that Mr Vine earned between £700,000 and 749,000 a year in 2016/2017 as top salaries were revealed during a row over the gender pay gap.

Brazilian bombshell: Hunt reveals lambada love

Jeremy Hunt has spoken of his love of lambada dancing in the latest insight into the pastimes of the Tory leadership contenders.

The Foreign Secretary said it was ‘quite an intimate dance’ and the music ‘brings back some happy memories’.

His comments came after Boris Johnson revealed a passion for making and painting model buses.

On BBC Radio 2’s Jeremy Vine show, Mr Hunt had the track Lambada by Kaoma played in his honour.

He said: ‘When I was elected as an MP in 2005 my big passion was lambada dancing, I have a lot of Brazilian friends, I used to go to the carnival in Brazil.

‘This just brings back some happy memories.

‘This is a dance for single people and quite an intimate dance so perhaps not one for the married listeners.’

Mr Hunt’s passion for dancing has won admirers around the Cabinet table, with Michael Gove describing his lambada as ‘something amazing’ in 2012.

Mr Gove said that Mr Hunt had a ‘sprung dancefloor in his house in London to enable him to practise, and if you ever want anyone to liven up your party by cutting the rug with dash and distinction then Jeremy is the man to invite’.

He later joined male stars including John Humphrys, Huw Edwards, Nick Robinson and Jon Sopel who agreed to take pay cuts.

Mr Hunt argued that being a successful entrepreneur should be seen as a positive thing, adding: ‘We have to encourage people who take risks and set up businesses and create jobs.

‘It’s not offensive – I am proud of my business success.’

Mr Hunt, 52, claimed his business background would help him get the best deal from Brussels.

During a phone-in segment, a caller told Mr Hunt he believed the EU was ‘treating us like dirt’ in Brexit talks. The Foreign Secretary replied: ‘That is exactly what I feel. I don’t think they have shown respect for us at all.’

He will today announce a plan for graduates’ tuition fee debts to be cancelled if they create a start-up that employs more than ten people for five years. At present, just 1 per cent of graduates start their own businesses.

Mr Hunt will say: ‘If we are to turbocharge our economy and take advantage of Brexit, we need to back the young entrepreneurs who take risks and create jobs.’

The Foreign Secretary told a Tory internet hustings he wanted online voting introduced for general elections. ‘I think it will encourage more participation in democracy,’ he said.

Minutes before the interview with Mr Vine, which he carried out in Chelmsford, Mr Hunt had bought a posh strawberry milkshake in a cafe in Chelmsford, posing for pictures sipping it through a straw from a jam jar. 

He paid £9 for two milkshakes costing £4.50 each, a strawberry one for himself, and a vanilla one for Chelmsford MP Vicky Ford at A Canteen cafe.

He had been chatting to small business owners in the Essex town ahead of the live interview on Radio 2 at lunchtime. 

Sipping the drink from a jar, he said ‘this is some mean milkshake’, adding: ‘A big improvement on Nigel Farage’s milkshake moment.’ 

This was a reference to an incident in Newcastle last month where the Brexit Party leader was pelted with a £5.25 banana and salted caramel Five Guys milkshake.

Paul Crowther, the chucker, later admitted criminal damage and common assault and was ordered to do unpaid work. 

Mr Hunt also bought some white orchids for his wife, joking with a market florist: ‘I keep on calling her Japanese when she’s actually Chinese – I tell you, I bought a lot of flowers when I did that.’ 

Mr Hunt posed for selfies with supporters while campaigning in Chelmsford town centre today

Mr Hunt posed for selfies with supporters while campaigning in Chelmsford town centre today

He also toured the  Chelmsford Indoor Retail Market and chatted to business owners

He also toured the  Chelmsford Indoor Retail Market and chatted to business owners

Mr Hunt also bought some white orchids for his wife, joking with a market florist: 'I keep on calling her Japanese when she's actually Chinese - I tell you, I bought a lot of flowers when I did that'

Mr Hunt also bought some white orchids for his wife, joking with a market florist: ‘I keep on calling her Japanese when she’s actually Chinese – I tell you, I bought a lot of flowers when I did that’

The Foreign Secretary's remarks came as a new poll suggested a majority of British voters still want the UK to leave the European Union

Mr Hunt also bought some white orchids for his wife, joking with a market florist: ‘I keep on calling her Japanese when she’s actually Chinese – I tell you, I bought a lot of flowers when I did that’

Taxi for Hunt: He raised eyebrows through his first music choice on the programme - Lambada by Kaoma. It was a surprise chart hit in 1989.

Taxi for Hunt: He raised eyebrows through his first music choice on the programme – Lambada by Kaoma. It was a surprise chart hit in 1989.

So who is the richer Jeremy – Hunt or Vine?  

Jeremy Vine 

Job: Radio and TV presenter

Age: 54

Education: £38,000-per-year Epsom College and Durham University

Lives: Has been based in London since 1999, previously lived in South Africa.

Family: Second wife Rachel is 11 years his junior. They have two children Martha and Anna 

Relatives: Brother Tim is a stand-up comedian  

Salary: Circa £750,000

Other business interests: After-dinner and event speaker, for a reported five-figure sum 

Jeremy Hunt 

Job: Foreign Secretary

Age: 52

Education: £39,000-per-year Charterhouse School and Oxford 

Lives: Multi million-pound homes in London and Surrey

Family: Wife Lucia is 11 years his junior and they have three children Eleanor, Jack and Anna

Relatives: Brother Charles runs a duvet business

Salary:  £141,000 as a senior minister 

Other business interests: Ran publisher Hotcourses, sold in 2017 for £14m

  

The two Jeremys went head-to-head on the radio today on the subject of money.

Both are well off, having benefited from expensive public school educations before attending top universities.

Mr Hunt, the son of a Royal Navy admiral, went to the prestigious Charterhouse School in his Surrey home town of Godalming, which these days costs around £39,000 per year.

He then went on to attend Oxford University before working as a management consultant and an English teacher in Japan and trying his hand at starting his own businesses.

He founded Hotcourses, an educational publisher, in the 1990s. He quit as a director in 2009 and it is not clear how much he was paid during his time running it. 

But he remained a shareholder and made £14million when it was sold in 1017.

He also earns £141,000 as a Cabinet minister and MP. He is married to Lucia, who he met through Hotcourses, and they have three children. They have multi million-pound homes in London and the Surrey village of Hambledon in his constituency and he also has use of a grace-and-favour apartment as Foreign Secretary.

He also has other business interests including property – last year he was referred to the parliamentary standards commissioner after failing to declare his share in seven flats in Southampton. 

Mr Vine is now a freelance presenter, working on radio and television for both the BBC and Channel 5.

A former BBC Africa news correspondent he also presents quiz show Eggheads on BBC 2 and plays a central role in its election broadcasts.

In 2017, during the row over the gender pay gap at the broadcaster and other organisations it was revealed he was one of its top earners.

He was paid between £700,000 and £750,000 per year, but later took a pay cut after a public outcry. 

He is also an active after-dinner speaker and is reputed to earn a five-figure sum for each engagement. 

He lives in London with his second wife Rachel and daughters Martha and Anna, where he is known for cycling the streets. 

 Jeremy Hunt blasted over ‘Little Englander’ Twitter jibe at Leave voters as he tries to set out plans to unite the country

Jeremy Hunt was blasted today after appearing to brand Leave voters as ‘Little Englanders’ during his Tory leadership campaign. 

The Foreign Secretary made the remark during a #BoJoNoShow Twitter question and answer session designed to contrast with Boris Johnson quiet campaign.

But he was roasted by Tory MPs and Leavers after replying to a councillor who asked how he would unite the country after Brexit.

He replied: ‘Deliver a Brexit that works for the 48 per cent not just the 52 per cent – a positive, open and internationalist Brexit, Great Britain not Little England.’

It prompted Mansfield MP Ben Bradley to describe him as ‘Theresa in Trousers’, adding: ‘There is no such thing as a Brexit that works for people who do not want Brexit. 

‘Govt has been trying that for the last 3 years and look where its got us!! The fudge must end!’

The Foreign Secretary’s remarks came as a new poll suggested a majority of British voters still want the UK to leave the European Union and just shy of a third want a No Deal split.

Brussels mocks Boris over ‘bullsh**’ Brexit plans

Brussels is engaged in an extraordinary war of words with Boris Johnson over his Brexit plans today – accusing him of talking ‘bullsh**’ and going over old ground.

The Tory front runner has dramatically ramped up the rhetoric vowing to face down the EU and leave without a deal if it will not bend.

He insisted there should be a ‘standstill’ agreement on trade terms in the divorce package, with the Irish border issue being sorted out after the UK legally leaves.

EU sources immediately dismissed the ideas, saying the two sides had ‘been here before’.

But Mr Johnson’s supporter Dominic Raab warned this morning: ‘If we end up on WTO terms, it will be the EU’s choice.’

Yesterday the Tory leadership frontrunner fleshed out a hardline strategy for negotiating with the EU, which he said could succeed where Mrs May had failed.

He pledged to tear up Mrs May’s Brexit deal and threaten to withhold all or part of the £39 billion divorce bill in the hope of persuading the EU to back down, saying the sum negotiated by Mrs May was ‘at the high end of the EU’s expectations’.

Mr Johnson said that if this failed he would seek a ‘standstill’ agreement with the EU to prevent the imposition of tariffs. Bank of England Governor Mark Carney and international trade secretary Liam Fox have both warned that the proposal is impossible. 

The YouGov survey of more than 1,600 people revealed that some 28 per cent of the electorate is in favour of a No Deal divorce from Brussels.

And 13 per cent of people support a split on the terms secured by Theresa May while 16 per cent want a softer Brexit.

The poll, conducted for The Times, suggests that some form of Brexit is favoured by 57 per cent of voters. That proportion is higher than the 52 per cent in the 2016 referendum, although that question was a straight choice between Leave and Remain. 

Some 43 per cent of people want Britain to continue with its membership of the EU in the latest poll. 

Labour leaver Kate Hoey was among those who laid into Mr Hunt over his comment, saying: ‘How dare Jeremy Hunt make such a snide comment about the millions of Leavers. 

‘Not a very sensible way of uniting the country.’

Mr Hunt said today that committing to the October 31 Brexit date was a ‘fake promise’ from Mr Johnson.

Appearing on Jeremy Vine’s BBC Radio 2 show, he said: ‘The phrase maybe I should use is a fake promise.

‘I think I am more likely to get us out of the EU by October 31 because I’m a negotiator, I’m an entrepreneur, I have got a business background and negotiation is what I did every day of the week.

‘But if we do it in this kind of ‘do or die’ way, the risk is we will just trip into a general election because Parliament will stop it, as they did in March, and then we will have (Jeremy) Corbyn in Downing Street and there’ll be no Brexit at all.’

He acknowledged that a no-deal Brexit ‘would have some impact on business and I wouldn’t make light of that’.

‘I would leave without a deal with a heavy heart because it wouldn’t be easy for a lot of businesses, particularly farmers.

‘But in the end, if that was the only way to leave, we have to do what people say.’

 

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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