Jacob Rees-Mogg, the Conservative MP for North East Somerset, has refused to rule out standing for the party’s leadership, hours after it was reported that he was planning to stand.
Ted Malloch, an academic who lunched with Rees-Mogg, said to the Sunday Mail:
“I was at a lunch with Jacob very recently and he indicated he would like to be considered for the leadership when the time comes”.
Rees-Mogg denied that he had indicated that he would stand and said “I am fully supporting Theresa May”. The MP, who is to the right of the Conservative Party and is also pro-Brexit, refused to rule out a future leadership bid.
Matthew Parris, the former Conservative MP, criticised Rees-Mogg, saying:
“For the 21st-century Conservative Party, Jacob Rees-Mogg would be pure hemlock. His manners are perfumed but his opinions are poison. Rees-Mogg is quite simply an unfailing, unbending, unrelenting reactionary. His record on every moral, social, sexual or reproductive issue I’ve looked at is brute moral conservative. He has been a straight-down-the-line supporter of every welfare cut I’ve checked”.