Jeremy Richard Streynsham Hunt|
1 November 1966
|Alma mater||Magdalen College, Oxford|
Jeremy Hunt is a British Conservative Party politician who has been the Secretary of State for Health since 2012 and the MP for South West Surrey since the 2005 General Election, when he succeeded his cousin Baroness Bottomley.
As Health Secretary, Hunt was responsible for negotiating a new contract for junior doctors which increased their basic pay but reduced the hours that qualify for premium pay, including reclassifying Saturday as "normal hours". Negotiations with the doctors' union, the British Medical Association (BMA), failed, resulting in multiple strikes in 2016.
In February 2017, when Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn accused Theresa May of arranging a 'sweetheart deal' with Surrey County Council, to avoid the levying of a 15% increase in Council Tax for funding social care, Corbyn noted that the constituencies of both Jeremy Hunt and the Chancellor Philip Hammond were in Surrey, which must have influenced the special funding arrangements that had been secretly agreed.
Voice from the North
According to Northern Voices in December 2015:
"I doubt there is anything that is more guaranteed to get the backs up of English workers than hearing some upper middle-class Tory bastard telling them that they need to work harder.
"Earlier this year at the Tory Party conference in Manchester, the multi-millionaire Health Secretary, Jeremy Richard Streynsham Hunt, claimed in a conference speech that low-paid workers lacked dignity and self respect and ought to graft like the Chinese 'Who put in punishing hours' in a sweatshop. Needless to say, having been born into a life of privilege, this former head boy of Charterhouse and student of Magdalen College Oxford, would know all about hard graft.
"Jeremy Hunt's own career and advancement in life, is something that seems to have been shrouded in mystery. At the Tory Party conference, Hunt claimed that his father "worked as a manager" for the NHS. Given that his father, Sir Nicholas John Streynsham Hunt, was Admiral of the Fleet in his main career, this is something of an exaggeration. After retirement, Sir Nicholas like a lot of well-connected establishment figures, became a 'quangoista', joining various hospital boards. He then became Chairman of the South West Surrey District Health Authority during 1990 to 1995 and then Chairman of Nuffield Hospitals from 1996 to 2001. For most of this time, his niece, Virginia Bottomley, was the Secretary of State for Health in a Conservative government.
During 1998-2001, Virginia Bottomley became vice-Chair of the British Council, a body that is linked to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and which promotes British cultural interests overseas. While she was at the British Council, Jeremy Hunt, became the monopoly supplier obtaining the catering contract for his company 'Hotcourses'. As the monopoly catering supplier for the British Council, Jeremy amassed the fortune that he is so proud of today.
Until her retirement from open politics, Virginia Bottomley, had been the Conservative MP for South West Surrey. In 2005, her cousin Jeremy Hunt inherited her constituency (not quite Queen's Crawley) and stepped into her shoes becoming the new MP. Virginia was then ennobled and became Baroness Bottomley of Nettlestone. She now lobbies on behalf of the private health sector and was a director of BUPA between 2007-2013.
After being elected to Parliament, Jeremy was appointed Minister for Media and Culture and was put in charge of adjudicating the News Corp bid for BSkyB. Jeremy had previously partnered News Corp in his educational supplies business. After being an MP for just seven years, Jeremy Hunt became Secretary of State for Health, a position that had been previously held by his cousin Virginia Bottomley.
Although he owes much of his success in life to the social class that he was born into and his social connections, the Prime Minister, David Cameron, says that it's not where you come from that really matters but where you are going. But career progress of this type, "the leg up", or some would say 'nepotism,' is something that is admired by Cameron in spite of his assertions about merit. Cameron's only job outside of politics, was when he worked for Carlton TV, a job he got by being given a leg up by his mother-in-law, Lady Annabel Astor.
We do not mean to throw any odious imputation upon the general character of either Virginia Bottomley or Jeremy Hunt, nor do we suggest that they have acted in any way illegally. However, it is intriguing how both their lives and careers have been so closely intertwined as Jeremy as followed in the footsteps of his older cousin in becoming Health Secretary and in inheriting her Surrey constituency. Nor should we be surprised at the antics of a nepotistic English ruling elite, the Tory Party, who work to defend established privilege and work for anyone with money or power.
As for working like the Chinese, Jeremy Hunt failed to mention in his speech to the Tory Party that in 2010, Apple's Foxconn plants in China issued contracts forcing workers to sign a pledge stating that they would not commit suicide due to workplace stress. Another cousin, is Tristram Hunt MP, the son of Lord Hunt.
Hunt was born in Kennington and studied Philosophy, Politics, and Economics at Magdalen College, Oxford, where he was president of the Oxford University Conservative Association.