Here’s a quick primer on the newly minted UK Prime Minister, for those who don’t follow UK politics too closely:
A Member of Parliament since 1997, and known as a liberal Conservative who served as Home Secretary under last Prime Minister Cameron, May was sworn in today as the second female Prime Minister in the UK. 59-year-old May won the Conservative leadership race, and with it the PM seat, after her caucus-mate Andrea Leadsom effectively killed her own campaign by saying she was more qualified than May to lead Britain because she is a mother.
May is the daughter of an Anglican Vicar and married to banker Philip May since 1980 – after being famously introduced by their Oxford friend Benazir Bhutto. Although described as a liberal Conservative, she also has a reputation of being tough on immigration, tough on drugs and tough on crime – perhaps just generally a reputation as a tough figure. Accomplishments a-many, perhaps her most famous controversy was her “Go Home Vans” initiative where she attempted to encourage illegal migrants to self-deport.
While generally known as Euro-sceptic, she stood with the “Remain” side through the Referendum that resulted in “Brexit”Despite her role on the “Remain” camp, she has declared that “Brexit means Brexit” and that there will be no make-over of the referendum.She has also reached out and brought under her Cabinet tent one of the most controversial figures of the Brexit “Leave” camp: Boris Johnson the ex-mayor of London will serve as the new Foreign SecretaryIn 2007 she famously blasted then Prime Minister Gordon Brown as an unelected Prime Minister with no mandate and called on him to call a snap election – undoubtedly words that will haunt her as she finds herself in the same position but in a much more divided political environmentAs Prime Minister, she has vowed to to unite the country and to espouse a “strong, new, positive vision for the future,” not just for the privileged, but for everyone.
Welcome Prime Minister May – may you be a positive influence on world affairs.