Known as a true-blue Tory, the Right Honourable Priti Patel, 43, the daughter of immigrant Gujarati parents, had been in the forefront of the Brexit campaign long before Boris Johnson, Michael Gove and Lord Norman Lamont joined the bandwagon. After Brexit became a reality, there has been speculation that she may put herself up for the top post of the Conservative party, although she is too junior for it.
However, given her strong right-wing views, many believe outgoing premier David Cameron would not have been surprised by her support for Brexit. Patel’s father was very right-wing (he even stood as a UKIP councillor in 2013) and her own teenage heroes were Margaret Thatcher and the late Cecil Parkinson, once her local MP and a regular customer at the corner shop run by her father. She has earlier endorsed the return of capital punishment. In 2012, she was one of the so-called “young guns” from the party’s new right who called for a culture of “graft, risk and effort” to project Britain into the ‘super league’ of nations. In the 1997 general election, she defected, albeit briefly, to the anti-Europe Referendum Party, which campaigned for a vote to decide on whether Britain should stay in the EU.