Jacob Rees-Mogg for next Commons speaker?
John Bercow has been in post of speaker of the House of Commons since 2009 and shows no sign of wanting to step down any time soon. But when he does leave the stage, who will be waiting in the wings?
The ideal candidate for his job would have deep respect for the ancient traditions of parliament and would be well-versed in the depths of Erskine May. A sharp tongue and an impressive vocabulary would not go amiss. And they should like the sound of their own voice.
For many people’s money, that would make Jacob Rees Mogg a shoo-in. But is he up for it?
Thankfully for his fans, the erudite MP for North East Somerset has indicated that he could indeed be interested when the vacancy arises - if he can put his Tory convictions to one side and win over a few fellow parliamentarians.
It has emerged that Rees Mogg told political journalist Emilio Casalicchio:
“I am quite well versed in the doctrine of the Catholic Church but I don't think I am quite going to be made Pope. I would quite like to be, but I don't think my chances are very great.
“I love what I am doing. The Speaker has to be completely independent and a-political, and I would probably find that very difficult.”
Casalicchio recently spoke to Rees Mogg for The House magazine, but the MP's comments about the speaker job do not feature in the interview and had not been published... until now.