'Wannabe PM' Jacob Rees-Mogg has raked in £4mn since becoming MP
The North-East Somerset MP became co-founder of Somerset Capital Management (SCM) back in 2007, and is one of the 21 members who received a combined payment of £21.9 million (US$28 million) this year.
According to the register of MPs’ interests, Rees-Mogg owns 15 percent of the company, meaning his dividend this year likely amounted to £3.3 million.
Asked about his copious income, Rees-Mogg told the Sunday Times the sum is actually “very considerably less.”
The Old Etonian also declared £173,000 as part of an SCM remuneration package in the year to March, alongside the monthly salary of £20,255 he gets for working just 30-35 hours per month.
The father-of-six, nanny-reliant Tory MP also earns between £250 and £270 for articles published in the Telegraph, on which he spends only a couple of hours.
When asked about the estimated £4 million earnt through SCM since he was elected to the House of Commons, he told the newspaper: “I’m not going to confirm any figure, but ... I’ve never pretended I have no other income.
“I am fortunate to have a private income and it’s my business and I’m actually quite proud of it.”
According to They Work For You, a website monitoring MPs’ voting records, pro-Brexit campaigner Rees-Mogg “consistently voted for a reduction in spending on welfare benefits,” “consistently voted against paying higher benefits over longer periods for those unable to work due to illness or disability” and “consistently voted against raising welfare benefits at least in line with prices.”
Despite earning many times the average salary while backing legislation that has slashed the social safety net for thousands of Britons, “young fogey” Rees-Mogg would make a popular second choice to succeed May as PM after Brexit secretary David Davis, a recent YouGov poll found.
An online petition backing Rees-Mogg, founded by two Vote Leave campaigners, has garnered more than 20,000 signatures, while campaign group ‘Moggmentum’ – a play on Labour’s Momentum – has been launched in support of his leadership bid.
However, writer and former Conservative MP Matthew Parris cautioned against Rees-Mogg’s “poisonous” opinions.
“For the 21st-century Conservative Party, Jacob Rees-Mogg would be pure hemlock,” he wrote in the Times.
“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.”