A self-described “Catholic unionist” from a Belfast household who took pleasure in singing Irish nationalist ballads, the background of Conor Burns may appear to some at odds together with his long-term profile as one of many youthful Eurosceptic stalwarts of the Conservative celebration.
One other function of that rise was a friendship with the late Margaret Thatcher, whom he reportedly met in 1997 after driving her husband, Denis, again from a golf outing.
“DT insisted that I are available ‘and meet the boss’,” Burns later recalled.
The previous prime minister would go on to help various makes an attempt by Burns to enter parliament, together with when she defied physician’s orders to make a uncommon public tackle to launch the activist’s ill-fated try and change into the Tory MP for Eastleigh in 2001.
A former chairman of Southampton College Conservative Affiliation, Burns was backed by Norman Tebbit to be the celebration’s scholar director and in addition labored for one more famous Eurosceptic, Invoice Money.
Different roles got here at DeHavilland, the political and public affairs firm, in finance with Zurich Recommendation Community and as a vice-president of the Younger Britons’ Basis, an organisation, since closed, which was dubbed “the Conservative madrasa” due to its radical views.
His Westminster breakthrough got here in 2010 when he was elected as MP for Bournemouth West, and he went on to function parliamentary non-public secretary to 5 totally different ministers, together with underneath Johnson when he was overseas secretary.
Throughout that point, Burns claimed that his Twitter account was hacked after tweets had been despatched to the EU’s chief Brexit negotiator, Michel Barnier, demanding particulars of the UK’s cost obligations to Brussels.
Burns adopted Johnson out the door when the latter resigned from his ministerial put up in 2018 amid opposition to the Brexit plans of the then prime minister, Theresa Might.
Burns’s loyalty was rewarded when Johnson turned prime minister, and he was appointed minister of state for commerce coverage in July 2019. The position gave him duties for coverage on areas together with commerce agreements, obstacles to markets and worldwide schooling exports.
Earlier roles have additionally included a stint as chairman of the all-party group on Bahrain, throughout which period he defended the kingdom’s record on human rights and urged Britain to not flip its again on it.
— to www.theguardian.com