The Top 100 Most Influential People on the Right 2015
6 Oct 2015 at 10:00
1. (+1) David Cameron
Having won an unexpected majority at the election, David Cameron takes over the top place in this list once again, having lost it to both Nigel Farage and George Osborne in recent years. He now has two to three years to create a lasting political legacy. Will he be the prime minister who leads us out of the EU, or seals our place at the heart of it?
2. (+1) George Osborne
Chancellor of the Exchequer
Like Lynton Crosby, George Osborne is at the height of his powers. His image has been transformed. The economy is on the up. He’s effectively running the government’s domestic policy. He’s also taken over the mantle of favourite to succeed David Cameron, a dangeous position to hold as he well knows.
3. (+2) Lynton Crosby
General Election Campaign Director
Tim Ross’s forthcoming book WHY THE TORIES WON lays bare the contribution Lynton Crosby made to the Tory victory in May. Revered as a God-like figure in CCHQ, Crosby is at the peak of his powers and the next Tory leader will prostrate themselves in front of him, begging him to return to run the campaign in 2020, and rightly so.
4. (-3) Nigel Farage
Leader of the United Kingdom Independence Party
It’s been a funny old year for Nigel Farage. Nearly 4 million votes, yet only one MP to show for it. The disaster of his post election non resignation is still a millstone around his neck and he shows little sign of being able to unify his warring forces.
5. (+1) Theresa May
Now the longest serving Home Secretary for decades, it was in some ways a shame that Theresa May wasn’t made Foreign Secretary in the post election reshuffle, giving her more experience of issues she’d need to be on top of if she succeeds David Cameron. Her weakness is the lack of identifiable ‘Mayites’ on the backbenches. She’s got a couple of years to work on that.
6. (+3) Jeremy Hunt
Secretary of State for Health
On election night, when they thought the Tories would lose, there was a conversation around the Cameron dining table in which he and his colleagues identified Jeremy Hunt as Cameron’s successor. If he discovers a harder political edge, it could still happen. The outsider often wins in the end.
. (+4) Samantha Cameron
Wife of the Prime Minister
Evidence grows by the month of the quiet, behind the scenes influence Samantha Cameron has on her husband. She knows her own mind and she’d not be human if she didn’t use every opportunity to get her husband to do what in her mind is the “right thing”, especially on humanitarian intervention in the Syrian crisis.
8. (-) Sajid Javid
Secretary State for Business, Innovation & Skills
A smooth operator, Javid is being talked about as one of the leading contenders to take over from David Cameron. He’s in a job which will allow him to shine, and his response to the Redcar steel crisis has been impressive. We now need to see more of his personality and personal narrative.
9. (+33) Ruth Davidson
Leader, Scottish Conservatives
Ruth Davidson has had a stonking leader in charge of the Scottish Conservatives. They may only have one MP but she expects to increase the number of MSPs in the Scottish elections next May. If she were in Westminster she’d be a serious candidate to lead the UK party.
10. (-6) Boris Johnson
Mayor of London
Not the best of years for the newly elected MP for Uxbridge, but no one should write him off. Still the darling of rank and file Tories, he’s got time to rebuild his reputation and bounce back, but his main challenge is to convince his fellow MPs that he should be in the final two in a leadership contest.
11. (+1) Michael Gove
Secretary of State for Justice
Gove has shaken himself off and dusted himself down and got on with the job. He’s abandoned some of Chris Grayling’s reforms, and struck a very different tone on prisoner rehabilitation.
12. (-5) Philip Hammond
A rather quiet year for Philip Hammond, which is odd given the situation in the middle east and Europe. If he’s to be a leadership contender he needs to define himself more and market his ideas and appeal. He’s actually got a really funny sense of humour. He should show it more.
13. (-3) Lord Michael Ashcroft
Businessman & Philanthropist
The fuss over Michael Ashcroft’s & Isabel Oakeshott’s book is testament to his continuing influence on matters Conservative. His political business interests and ownership of ConservativeHome mean that he’s unlikely to disappear from the political scene, however much his detractors in Downing Street might relish the prospect.
14. (-) Michael Fallon
Secretary of State for Defence
Mr Dependable, Fallon is often sent onto the airwaves to defend the impossible, but he does it with panache. Can he, though, be the Defence Secretary that finally reverses the defence cuts?
15. (NEW) Mark Harper
A remarkable renaissence for this very popular Conservative MP and proof that if you play it right there is a way back after a resignation. An inspired appointment, Harper is a uniting force but knows how to be firm and impose party discipline.
16. (+31) Zac Goldsmith
Conservative candidate for Mayor of London
This time next year Zac will either be in the top ten, or a bit of a busted flush. The seven month long campaign will tell us a lot about whether this idealist and original thinker can become a top flight politician or not.
17. (-) Chris Grayling
Leader of the House of Commons
A great survivor, Chris Grayling is revelling in his new role, away from the bed of nails that is the Ministry of Justice. He will be an influential player in the EU referendum campaign, and it’s even rumoured he may even resign to support the ‘No’ campaign – a prelude to a leadership bid as the standardbearer of the right?
18. (-) Iain Duncan Smith
Secretary of State for Work & Pensions
Undoubtedly the most radical reformer in the government, he has taken a huge amount of flak, but it washes him like water off a duck’s back. He has pursued his reforms with a zeal other cabinet ministers could learn a lot from.
19. (-) Nicky Morgan
Secretary of State for Education
If she is to set herself up as the key female rival to Theresa May for the leadership, she will need to define her brand of Conservatism. Constantly underestimated by her rivals, Morgan is a good performer on the broadcast media, but she does need to acquire some idelogical grit.
20. (-4) Edward Llewellyn
_Chief of Staff to the Prime Minister
It had been thought Ed Llewellyn might depart for a diplomatic appointment, but it seems he will stay for the duration, or at least until the EU referendum, in which he will be a key influence on the PM, which is exactly what Eurosceptics fear.
21. (+10) Lord Daniel Finkelstein
Columnist, The Times
Danny Finkelstein is said to form one half of George Osborne’s brain. The two have been inseparable since working together in William Hague’s private office, and if Osborne does inherit the leadership expect Finkelstein to perform a leading role in his adninsitration.
22. (+37) Lord Andrew Feldman
Chairman of the Conservative Party
In many ways it’s quite outrageous that Feldman’s main qualification for this job is that he is David Cameron’s best friend, but he’s been very effective in his roles at CCHQ over the years and is now overseeing a root and branch overhaul of the party machinery, but his detractors maintain that his lack of background in the party means he can’t understand the consequences of some of his recommendations.
23. (NEW) Thea Rogers
Chief of Staff to George Osborne
Thea Rogers has almost singlehandedly managed the transformation of the Chancellor’s image in the last two years, and to great effect. If he becomes leader in 2019 it will be in part due to the fact that he has accepted her PR advice. She’s now taken over Rupert Harrison’s role as chief of staff, but let no one imagine she will be stepping back from advising the Chancellor on his image or media engagements.
24. (-1) Matthew Hancock
Minister for the Cabinet Office
It had been assumed that Hancock would have made the full cabinet, probably as chief secretary, but as with Grant Shapps, his loyalty didn’t quite get its full desserts. He now has to sell the trade union bill to his colleagues and the public, which will be no mean feat considering it’s a bit of a dog’s breakfast.
25. (-3) Graham Brady
Chairman, 1922 Committee
The role of the 1922 committee chairman in a parliament where the Tories have a majority of only 12 is hugely important. The PM needs to know what his backbenchers are thinking and Brady tells him in no uncertain terms.
26. (-5) Oliver Letwin
Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster
He’s the Scarlet Pimpernel of the government – the media seek him here, they seek him there, but he never seems to give interviews and just gets on with his job of, well, being very quietly very effective.
27. (+19) John Whittingdale
Secretary of State for Culture, Media & Sport)
An inspired appointment, but he is showing worrying signs of going native on reform of the BBC and recanting on his previously strongly held views that the licence fee is an anachronism.
28. (+21) Robert Halfon
Deputy Chairman of the Conservative Party
One of the most popular members of the parliamentary party, Halfon has been given an important role at CCHQ. If he does it well, he’ll be heading for a top ministrial position within a couple of years.
29. (+1) Catherine Fall
Deputy Chief of Staff to the Prime Minister
Said to be the member of his staff that is most trusted by the Prime Minister. Discrete, loyal and never in the public eye, she hasn’t made a single error in ten years working for the PM.
30. (-5) Patrick McLoughlin
Secretary of State for Transport
A great survivor, many expected Cameron to despatch Patrick McLoughlin to the backbenches in the post-election reshuffle, but they underestimated him. He’s the ultimate safe pair of hands.
31. (+12) Greg Clark
Secretary of State for Communities & Local Government
The quietly spoken Clark is now a cabinet minister in his own right and heads a department where he can really make a mark. Some think he could use this position to be a dark horse candidate in the forthcoming leadership race.
32. (-3) Andrew Tyrie
Chairman, Treasury Select Committee
Tyrie has been an excellent chairman of the Treasury Select Committee. He may radiate calmness and niceness, but he has the forensic ability to question a witness which some of his colleagues sadly do not.
33. (+4) Daniel Hannan
MEP for South East England
His articulate advocacy of EU withdrawal will be vital to the Eurosceptic cause as the referendum draws ever closer. Once it’s over many expect him to make a bid to stand for Westminster in 2020.
34. (-) Paul Goodman
One of the few non MPs on this list who can phone up any cabinet minister and they’ll take his call immediately. He seems to have become more radical as the years go by and isn’t afraid to offer constructive criticism where he feels it is merited.
35. (-) Jesse Norman
Chair, Culture, Media & Sport Select Committee
Possibly the most talented of the 2010 intake not to be promoted to ministerial office, Jesse Norman doesn’t deserve to continue to be blackballed by No.10 for his rebellion over House of Lords reform. He’s now decided to go in a different direction and won his battle to be chairman of his select commitee over stiff opposition.
36. (-9) Jo Johnson
Minister for Universities
The lesser known of the Johnsons, he drops a little in this year’s list, not least because so many people seem to think his two promotions happened in part because No. 10 knew they would irk Boris. Maybe unfair, but that’s how people think in the Westminster bubble.
37. (+8) Matthew Elliott
_Chief Executive, Business for Britain
Having run the sucessful No2AV campaign, Elliott was a natural to run the Business for Britain campaign, which argues the Eurosceptic case. He’s more back room than front of house but certainly knows how to campaign and lobby.
38. (+1) Lord Stephen Gilbert
Deputy Chairman of the Conservative Party
As Head of campaigns, Gilbert oversaw the CCHQ election campaign and was rewarded for it with a deserved peerage. He has been at the centre of things during the reigns o four successive leaders and is popular throughout the party.
39. (-24) Grant Shapps
Minister of State, Dfid
If there were any justice, having helped deliver a general election win, Shapps would have remained in the top 20 in this list. However, following a bout of unwelcome publicity he became too hot to handle, so No. 10 thought a period out of the limelight would be in order. Maybe they were right, but many think Shapps was dealt a raw deal.
40. (+18) Anna Soubry
Minister of State for Small Business
A highly effective media performer it can’t be long before Anna Soubry is promoted to the full cabinet. It was testament to her abilities that she held on to her highly marginal seat and increased her majority to more than 4,200.
41. (-28) William Hague
Former Foreign Secretary
William Hague has been largely silent since the election, adding fuel to the thought that he really has quit politics for good. He will, however, have enduring influence if, like John Major, he picks his time to comment on the great issues of the day.
42. (+31) Greg Hands
Chief Secretary to the Treasury
Probably the least well known member of the cabinet, he has made a good start to his new job as George Osborne’s right hand man. Indeed, it is said that he and David Gauke are effectively running the show, while the Chancellor busies himself with gearing up for a leadership bid.
43. (+14) Neil O’Brien
The former head of Policy Exchange, O’Brien is the man behind the Chancellor’s ‘Northern Powerhouse’ and has come up with many of Osborne’s more populist ideas. Never one to seek the limelight, he’s been a top addition to the Chancellor’s team.
44. (-11) Douglas Carswell
UKIP MEP for Clacton
Nowadays he looks a fish out of water in UKIP and one can’t help wondering whether he has come to regret his defection. However, he still has a following within UKIP among those who have grown tired of Nigel Farage’s leadership.
45. (-9) Tim Montgomerie
Columnist, The Times
About to depart these shores for a sojourn in the United States covering the Presidential election, Montgomerie falls a few places in this year’s list. His work at Legatum and his Times columns, though, mean that he retains a large degree of influence over the direction of right of centre politics.
46. (+4) Donal Blaney
Chairman, Conservative Way Forward & Chief Executive, Young Britons Foundation
Blaney has transformed the fortunes of CWF and recruited hundreds of younge rmembers to its ranks, many of whom weren’t born when Margaret Thatcher left office. He has brought US campaigning methods to the UK and his teams of volunteers player a key role in marginal seats in the election.
47. (NEW) Graeme Wilson
Press Secretary to David Cameron
Wilson has managed never to become the story, and is completely trusted by his former colleagues in the parliamentary lobby.
48. (-4) Nicholas Boles
Minister for Skills
One of the few free thinkers within government, if talent was the only consideration, Boles would be in the cabinet. He carries his think tank history with him and delights in thinking the unthinkable.
49. (+48) Suzanne Evans
UKIP GLA Candidate
Having written the UKIP manifesto, and getting many plaudits for it, Evans was seemingly Nigel Farage’s heir apparent, but since the election he has done everything to undermine her. Despite this she has retained a sense of calmness and humour and remains firmly on the sensible wing of UKIP.
50. (NEW) Brandon Lewis
Minister for Housing
A protege of Eric Pickles, Lewis has performed well in his different roles at the DCLG and is often used as a government spokesman across government policy. Could well be in the cabinet before too long.
51. (-13) Mark Littlewood
Director General of the Institute of Economic Affairs
Littlewood has had a successful period in charge of one of the oldest think tanks in the country, which has recently celebrated its 60th birthday. A pugnacious debater, he is one of the best advocates of free market economics.
52. (-14) Sir Edward Lister
Deputy Mayor of London
Eddie Lister is Boris Johnson’s indispensible chief of staff. If you want Boris to do anything you have to get past Eddie first. He’s the real power behind the Johnson throne.
53. (NEW) Fraser Nelson
Editor, The Spectator
Fraser Nelson was appointed editor at a comparitively young age, but he has more than lived up to both Andrew Neil’s and his readers’ expectations. An articulate exponent of right of centre politics, one wonders what his next move will be. Perhaps into elected politics?
54. (+15) Stephen Crabb
Secretary of State for Wales
Stephen Crabb has risen quietly through the Conservative ranks but his first year in the job has certainly been a success. One of the few front line bearded politicians, his challenge will be to be promoted within the cabinet out of the Wales job. It’s unlikely to happen soon, but don’t rule it out before the end of this parliament.
55. (NEW) Sheridan Westlake
_Special Advisor, No 10 Downing Street
Having spent many years working in the CRD and then for Eric Pickles, Sheridan Westlake has taken on a new enforcement role in Downing Street. His job is to read the small print, spot any bear traps or potential cock ups and make the machinery of government work.
56. (-8) Craig Oliver
_Director of Politics & Communications, No 10 Downing Street
One of the Prime Minister’s most trusted aides, Oliver has taken on a beefed up role since the election and now has a strategic role as well as being in charge of communications. Still viewed with suspicion by the print media, but his understanding of how the BBC operates is second to none.
57. (+6) Priti Patel
Minister of State for Employment
An undoubted rising star, she attends cabinet, but has become known for her slavish devotion to the party line, with an uncanny ability to parrot the CCHQ line like no other. If she rediscovers her independent spirit, she will be a force to be reckoned with.
58. (NEW) Amber Rudd
Secretary of State for Energy & Climate Change)
A key ally of George Osborne, Amber Rudd has made an impressive start to her cabinet career. Eloquent on the media and able to strike a balance between greenery and economic realism, she did well to hang on to her marginal seat in Hastings.
59. (NEW) Tracey Crouch
Minister for Sport
If ever there was a round peg in a round hole as a minister, it’s Tracey Crouch. A qualified football coach, she has made a blinding start in her new job and is tipped for rapid promotion. The question is, could she bear to leave the one job in politics she’s always wanted.
60. (NEW) James Chapman
Director of Communications to the Chancellor of the Exchquer
Many raised an eyebrow when James Chapman left one of the top jobs in journalism (political editor of the Daily Mail) to move to the Treasury, but he’s clearly identified George Osborne as the next PM, and so far he’s doing a good job, building on the work of Thea Rogers who helped transformed the chancellor’s public image.
61. Dominic Cummings
Communications Director, Business for Britain
Has introduced some rigour into the communications efforts of Business for Britain. He is a brilliant strategist, even if he does have a tendency to become the story. But the ‘Stay’ side of the debate will know that together with Matthew Elliott, Cummings is likely to make their life hell.
62. (+36) Stuart Polak
Director, Conservative Friends of Israel
One of the shrewdest single issue pressure group lobbyists around, Polak is about to join the Conservative benches in the House of Lords.
63. (NEW) Steve Baker
MP for Wycombe
As co-chairman of Conservatives for Britain, Baker has become one of the new faces of the eurosceptic right. Bright and articulate, he has a cavalier attitude to ministerial preferment and is the better politician for it.
64. (+36) Gavin Williamson
PPS to the Prime Minister
Williamson has built up a good reputation among Tory MPs and does his job as the eyes and ears of the PM very well. Is sure to get a ministerial job in the next reshuffle.
65. (NEW) Adam Atashzei
Deputy Political Secretary to the Prime Minister
Atashzai is a highly regarded recruit from CCHQ who is responsible for ‘lines to take’ and the famed Downing Street grid. Respected and trusted by everyone.
66. (-4) Paul Staines
Managing Editor, Guido Fawkes blog
The site everyone in politics loves to read, unless they feature on it. Staines has built up an impressive business and the guest list at last year’s 10th anniversary dinner was testament to his influence. Even the PM sent a video message.
67. (NEW) Katie Hopkins
Columnist, Mail Online
The woman people seem to love to hate, she’s actually quite a pussycat. She may have lost her Sun column, but she immediately bounced back by bagging a role on MailOnline.
68. (+15) David Gauke
Financial Secretary to the Treasury
Said to be the real Chancellor, while George Osborne runs the rest of the government. Was one of the key Conservative faces on the media during the general election because he’s trusted to toe a line and not drop the ball.
69. (-41) Liz Truss
_Secretary of State for DEFRA
A square peg in a round hole, Liz Truss hasn’t been allowed to shine in this portfolio and should have been moved in the post-election reshuffle. Her all too obvious leadership ambitions will be thwarted unless she is able to show more of what she is undoubtedly capable of.
70. (+10) Syed Kamall
_Leader of the European Conservatives & Reformists in the European Parliament
Fought a competent campaign to get the nomination for Conservative candidate for London mayor, coming second. The question now, is will he go for a Westminster seat. Having been an MEP for ten years he could be forgiven for thinking his work in the European Parliament is done.
71. (NEW) Christopher Booker
Columnist, Sunday Telegraph
The leading brain on Eurosceptic and climate change-sceptic issues, vastly underrated. He ought to be regarded as one of the top journalists of his generation, but the liberal elites unfairly traduce him and his excellent work. Ought to be a must-read for everyone on the centre right.
72. (-52) Eric Pickles
Conservative MP for Brentwood & Ongar
One of the best performing cabinet ministers in the coalition, Pickles should never have been disposed of. But he’s bounced back by leading a task force on corruption and becoming chairman of Conservative Friends of Israel.
73. (-20) Dean Godson
Director, Policy Exchange
It’s been a slightly quiet year for Policy Exchange, although their influence on government policy remains immense. Perhaps it’s a deliberate policy not to shout about their influence from the rooftops.
74. (+4) Liam Fox
Former Defence Secretary
Even though there seems no way back for him into government while David Cameron is still prime minister, Liam Fox is certainly able to make his presence known. He was one of the leaders of the rebellion over EU referendum rules and given his treatment by No. 10, one suspects his rebellions may become more frequent.
75. (+7) Douglas Murray
Associate Director, Henry Jackson Society
A trenchant exponent of neoconservative views on international issues, and a thoughtful writer on social issues. Softly spoken he is one of the most articulate commentators on the right and doesn’t take any hostages when debating on the media.
76. (NEW) Charles Moore
Author & Columnist
His biography of Margaret Thatcher is superb and is released this week. He’s one of the few must read columnists for everyone on the right and his Spectator Notes are a delight.
77. (-2) Theresa Villiers
Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
When she was appointed, many seemed flummoxed but according to some of the key players she has quietly got on with the job and won the respect of the various parties. She’s handled the recent troubles well and taken care not to inflame the situation.
78. (NEW) Simon Heffer
Columnist, Sunday Telegraph
He may not be a modern Conservative’s cup of tea but he’s umissable. A truly brilliant writer he gets to the nub of an argument more quickly than most and his books are unrivalled.
79. (NEW) Matthew Parris
Columnist, The Times & Spectator
For many he is the pre-eminent columnist of his generation. He can write entertainingly about anything and never bores, mainly because of his endearing unpredictability. Probably the most read columnist among Tory MPs.
80. (NEW) Arron Banks
Banks is an acquired taste for many. A former donor, he switched his allegiances to UKIP and now funds the UKIP Leave.Eu campaign. Liable to shout his mouth of, he is a sworn enemy of Douglas Carswell, who he disgracefully alleged was ‘mentally ill’.
81. (-5) Sarah Wollaston
Chair of the Health Select Committee
The maverick’s maverick many of her fellow MPs don’t regard her as a team player. However, to others she is the exemplification of what a decent MP should be – open minded, willing to speak out against her own party if need be, diligent and honest.
82. (+14) Raheem Kassam
Editor, Breitbart London
Kassam first came to prominence as editor of The Commentator, then he launched Breitbart London. In the autumn of 2014 he became Nigel Farage’s personal press officer and it’s fair to say he became a lightning rod for the UKIP leader. A marmite character, he’s now back in charge of Breitbart.
83. (-6) David Davis
Conservative MP for Haltemprice & Howden
The one time leadership contender is concentrating on fighting the cause of human rights and civil liberties. Regarded as a serial rebel by some, he has shown himself to be adept in holding the executive to account and even won a legal victory over the so-called snoopers’ charter.
84. (NEW) Ameet Gill
Director of Strategy, No 10 Downing Street
In charge of the famous Downing Street ‘grid’, he’s described by some as the No. 10 ‘air traffic controller’.
85. (-21) Paul Nuttall
Deputy Leader, UKIP
He managed to stay out of the post-election leadership travails, but some ask what exactly he does apart from appear on the airwaves as Nigel Farage’s bit of Liverpudlian rough. It’s unfair because he’s an effective backroom operator and doesn’t have the same ego issues as others at the top of UKIP.
86. (NEW) Camilla Cavendish
Head of of the No. 10 Policy Unit
A recent recruit from the comment pages of The Times, Cavendish will bring some rigour to the Downing Street operation, and some much needed political nouse. It was a big mistake to staff the unit with civil servants.
87. (+3) Andrew Mitchell
Former Chief Whip
Mitchell has become an influential voice on the backbenches and has now put Plebgate firmly behind him. Careful to avoid being seen as a serial revel he picks his fights carefully.
88. (NEW) Peter Hitchens
Columnist, Mail on Sunday
A true marmite character, Hitchens has a devoted set of fans, most of him share his somewhat negative view of the prime minister and the Conservative Party. The trouble is his columns are very ‘samey’ with one overriding theme – that the Conservative Party is not conservative at all, and only he has the answers to the nation’s problems.
89. (NEW) Elliott Johnson
Conservative Party activist
Elliott Johnson took his own life on 15 September after allegedly being bullied by senior Conservative Party figures. His inclusion in this list is by way of tribute to a young man who loved Conservative politics but felt suicide was his only way of escaping the bullying. May his memory live long and his family find it in their hearts to forgive those responsible.
90. (+5) Mark Wallace
Executive Editor, ConservativeHome
Wallace brings a bright, pugnacious approach to ConservativeHome and rarely sits on the fence in his writings. He often has some uncomfortable messages for the Conservative Party.
91. (NEW) Paul Abbott
Chief Executive, Conservative Way Forward
Spent years working in CCHQ, latterly as special advisor to Grant Shapps. Donal Blaney recruited him after the election to run Conservative Way Forward and together, the two of them have given CWF a sharper campaigning edge.
92. (NEW) Tim Stanley
Columnist, Daily Telegraph
Tim Stanley is from the new breed of young historians who has brought a very welcome fresh new writing style to the Telegraph. He’s also become a bit of name as a pundit and has made some very impressive appearances on Question Time.
93. (-9) Baroness Tina Stowell
Leader of the House of Lords
A uniting figure, Tina Stowell is very popular with their Lordships and has done well to curtail some potentially serious rebellions.
94. (NEW) Christian Guy_
Number 10 Policy Unit
Recruited from the Centre for Social Justice, where he had done sterling work on welfare reform, Guy’s appointment to the policy unit shows how serious Camilla Cavenish is in recruiting the best talent on the right.
95. (-8) Jonathan Isaby
Director, Taxpayers’ Alliance
Isaby is but a shadow of his former self – not in influence, but in physical weight, having shed seven stones this year. It’s ben a quieter year for the TPA which, one feels, needs a new cause to fight.
96. (NEW) Giles Kenningham
Deputy Press Secretary to the Prime Minister
One of the most talented of his generation of CCHQ press office graduates, Kenningham is both liked and respected by his colleagues and journalists. But he can be tough as nails too.
97. (NEW) Julia Hartley-Brewer
Columnist & Broadcaster
A profilic columnist and broadcaster, Hartley-Brewer has really raised her profile since her departure from LBC nine months ago. She’s unpredictable, feisty and intelligent and some reckon she’d make a great MP.
98. (NEW) Andrew Kennedy
Conservative Party Agent
Acts as agent to a group of constituencies in West Kent and writes a brilliant blog (Voting & Boating) on his life and work. One of the party’s best campaigners, it’s likely CCHQ will tyr to bring him in house before too long, if only to silence his very caustic blog!
99. (NEW) James Marshall
Special Advisor to the Chief Whip
Possibly the most powerful person in this list you’ve never heard of. And with a majority of 12, he becomes an even greater influence on events.
100. Steven Woolfe
UKIP MEP & Migration Spokesman
Very much on the sensible wing of UKIP, Woolfe is seen by many as a good bet to succeed Farage when the time comes. If it comes. His moderate approach on migration issues has won him many admirers outside UKIP, although possibly not so many from within.