Amber Augusta Rudd (born 1 August 1963) is a British Conservative politician. She has served as Home Secretary since 2016 and has served as Member of Parliament (MP) for the East Sussex constituency of Hastings and Rye since the 2010 general election, defeating the incumbent Labour member Michael Foster. Rudd is the third female Home Secretary, the fifth woman to hold one of the Great Offices of State and the fastest rising politician to a Great Office of State since the Second World War.
|The Right Honourable
13 July 2016
|Prime Minister||Theresa May|
|Preceded by||Theresa May|
|Minister for Women and Equalities|
9 January 2018
|Prime Minister||Theresa May|
|Preceded by||Justine Greening|
|Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change|
11 May 2015 – 13 July 2016
|Prime Minister||David Cameron|
|Preceded by||Ed Davey|
|Succeeded by||Greg Clark (Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)|
|Parliamentary Undersecretary of State for Climate Change|
15 July 2014 – 11 May 2015
|Sec. of State||Ed Davey|
|Preceded by||Greg Barker|
|Succeeded by||Office abolished|
|Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Chancellor of the Exchequer|
10 September 2012 – 7 October 2013
|Preceded by||Sajid Javid|
|Succeeded by||Rob Wilson|
|Member of Parliament
for Hastings and Rye
6 May 2010
|Preceded by||Michael Foster|
|Born||Amber Augusta Rudd
1 August 1963
Marylebone, London, England
|Spouse(s)||A. A. Gill (m. 1990; div. 1995)|
|Relatives||Roland Rudd (brother)|
|Alma mater||University of Edinburgh|
Rudd previously served as Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change from 2015 to 2016 after being the Parliamentary Undersecretary of State in the same department from 2014. She was appointed Home Secretary in Theresa May's ministry on 13 July 2016, and given the additional role of Minister for Women and Equalities in January 2018.
Early life and careerEdit
Rudd was born on 1 August 1963 in Marylebone, London, the fourth child of stockbroker Tony Rudd (1924–2017) and magistrate Ethne Fitzgerald (1929–2008), daughter of Maurice Fitzgerald, QC (grandson of the judge and Liberal politician John FitzGerald, Baron FitzGerald of Kilmarnock) and Christine (daughter of Augustus Bradhurst). Tony Rudd and Ethne Fitzgerald were married for 56 years. Her older brother Roland is a public relations executive, and a prominent Labour supporter.
She was educated at Cheltenham Ladies' College, an independent school in Gloucestershire, and from 1979 to 1981 at Queen's College, London, an independent day school for girls in London, followed by Edinburgh University where she read History. After graduating from university, Rudd joined J.P. Morgan & Co., working in both London and New York.
Rudd became a director of the investment company Lawnstone Limited at the age of 24 in January 1988, taking over from her sister and brother-in-law. Lawnstone became involved with Zinc Corporation, which was taken over by Monticello in 1999, before going into liquidation in 2001.
Rudd was a co-director of Monticello between 1999 and 2000, but the company was liquidated in 2003. Between 1998 and 2000, she was also a director of two companies based in The Bahamas, Advanced Asset Allocation Fund and Advanced Asset Allocation Management.
Rudd helped to find extras for the film Four Weddings and a Funeral (1994), for which she was credited as the "aristocracy co-ordinator", and appeared briefly in one of the church scenes in the film.
After standing at the 2005 general election as the Conservative candidate for the Labour-held seat of Liverpool, Garston, Rudd's name was added to the Conservative A-List. Following her selection to contest the Hastings and Rye constituency in 2006, she moved to the Old Town in 2007. In the May 2010 general election, Rudd was elected as the MP for Hastings & Rye with a majority of 1,993 votes. Shortly afterwards, Rudd was elected to serve as a Conservative member on the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Select Committee.
Rudd is vice-chair of the Parliamentary committee on female genital mutilation, which has campaigned against FGM and called for tougher legal penalties in the area. She has championed the cause of sex equality as chairperson of the All-party parliamentary group for Sex Equality, which published a report on women in work. Rudd chaired a cross-party enquiry into unplanned pregnancies which called for statutory sex and relationships education in all secondary schools. She has also called for a higher proportion of women in Cabinet.
In September 2012, she was made Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne. In October 2013, she became an assistant government whip. In July 2014, Rudd was appointed Minister for the Department for Energy and Climate Change.
Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change 2015–2016Edit
Following the 2015 general election, where she held her seat with an increased majority, she was promoted as Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change. In May 2015, she was appointed as a member of the Privy Council.
In November 2015, she proposed that the UK's remaining coal-fired power stations would be shut by 2025 with their use restricted by 2023. "We need to build a new energy infrastructure, fit for the 21st century." In November 2015, a leaked letter showed that the government was not on course to deliver its 2020 mandatory renewable energy target, leading to accusations from The Ecologist that Rudd had knowingly misled Parliament.
In July 2015, Craig Bennett of Friends of the Earth accused Rudd of hypocrisy in claiming to want to address climate change while at the same time, in his view, "dismantling an architecture of low-carbon policies carefully put together with cross-party agreement over the course of two parliaments". Rudd replied that "[Government] support must help technologies eventually stand on their own two feet, not encourage a permanent reliance on subsidy." Rudd participated in ITV's referendum debate regarding the European Union. She campaigned for the remain side alongside Nicola Sturgeon and Angela Eagle. They faced Gisela Stuart, Boris Johnson and Andrea Leadsom.
Home Secretary 2016 – presentEdit
When Theresa May became Prime Minister in July 2016, Rudd was appointed Home Secretary, being the fifth woman to hold one of the Great Offices of State, after Margaret Thatcher, Margaret Beckett, Jacqui Smith and May herself.
At the 2016 party conference, Rudd suggested that companies should be forced to disclose how many foreign workers they employ, with business leaders describing it as divisive and damaging. The proposal was revealed as a key plank of a government drive to reduce net migration and encourage businesses to hire British staff. However, senior figures in the business world warned the plan would be a "complete anathema" to responsible employers and would damage the UK economy because foreign workers were hired to fill gaps in skills that British staff could not provide. The plan was later dropped.
In October 2016, she negated calls for Australian citizens to obtain easier access to live and work in the United Kingdom following the UK's departure from the European Union, which were supported by UK Foreign and Commonwealth Secretary Boris Johnson, and Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop. Rudd also dismissed the idea that a free movement zone between British and Australian citizens would be established upon leaving the European Union; a measure supported by former Australian Prime Minister, Tony Abbott, stating "there are no plans to increase immigration from Australia...so I wouldn't envisage any change".
Later in October 2016, she decided not to open an inquiry into the events at Orgreave during the 1984 miners' strike, saying that there was "not a sufficient basis for me to instigate either a statutory inquiry or an independent review".
She was reappointed as Home Secretary after the 2017 general election, in which she retained her seat at Hastings and Rye by 346 votes.
In August 2017, Rudd replied to an email hoaxer posing as the recently appointed Downing Street Director of Communications, Robbie Gibb, revealing that "positive announcements" were imminent. The hoaxer used Rudd's public domain parliamentary email address but she replied using her private email which is not secure.
In September 2017 on The Andrew Marr Show, Rudd accused Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson of trying to undermine the Prime Minister, Theresa May, calling him a 'back-seat driver'. She said to Andrew Marr: "I don't want him (Boris) managing the Brexit process."
On 3 October 2017, during the Conservative Party Conference, it was reported that Rudd had hired Tory pollster Lynton Crosby to help her increase her majority in Hastings and Rye, amid speculation that she was planning to launch a bid for leadership of the party.
Unlawful detention and deportation of asylum seekersEdit
In August 2017, an emergency High Court hearing was held to examine Rudd's four-week delay in releasing an asylum seeker, who had been tortured in a Libyan prison, from a UK detention centre. Concern was expressed that the Home Secretary failed to provide a satisfactory explanation for the delay in releasing the man from detention. Rudd also failed to provide a barrister for this proceeding and was instead represented by a government solicitor, a move which the presiding judge described as "inconceivable".
In September 2017 the Guardian reported that Rudd had authorised the deportation of Samim Bigzad to Kabul, in breach of an earlier ruling banning her from doing so owing to the ongoing threat to his life from the Taliban. A High Court Judge found Rudd to be in contempt of court on three counts, after she ignored orders to return him to the UK. An unnamed immigration barrister advised the Independent newspaper that Rudd could be given a custodial sentence for defying the High Court's instructions. Bigzad was later returned to London.
In October 2017, Rudd announced a move by the Tory government to crack down on what British citizens are permitted to view on the internet. Piloted as part of a campaign against "radicalisation", Rudd stated that the government would be tightening the law so that UK citizens repeatedly reading certain forbidden internet content could face up to 15 years in jail for looking at the websites. Rudd stated "I want to make sure those who view despicable terrorist content online, including jihadi websites, far-right propaganda and bomb-making instructions, face the full force of the law.”
Rudd campaigned successfully for the construction of the Hastings to Bexhill Link Road. In early 2013, the Government gave the road the go ahead for construction after ten years of campaigning. Rudd is now spearheading a campaign called Complete The Link to see the final stage of the road get funding for construction. She has supported electrification of the Marshlink Line from Hastings to Ashford International, which could result in extending High Speed 1 and providing a high speed rail link from the constituency to Central London.
In April 2013, a profile of Rudd appeared in the Financial Times reported her referring to "people who are on benefits, who prefer to be on benefits by the seaside... moving down here to have easier access to friends and drugs and drink." She responded by stating that "I am incredibly optimistic about Hastings. I described the well-known problems that Hastings has to the Financial Times but I also talked about the incredible investment in the town, the fact that unemployment is going down and that there are many positive things to say about it."
Rudd married the writer and critic A. A. Gill in 1990 and they had two children. The couple separated in 1995, after Gill entered into a long-term relationship with journalist Nicola Formby. Gill and Rudd later divorced. Gill died in December 2016.
Rudd is a trustee of the Snowdon Trust, an organisation that helps young disabled people access education. Rudd was a director of the Susan Smith Blackburn Prize since 2003, an annual award for a first-time female playwright in the English language. She also serves as a governor of The St Leonards Academy in Hastings.
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- Tickell, Oliver. "Leaked letter: Rudd admits 25% green energy undershoot, misled Parliament". The Ecologist. Retrieved 10 November 2015.
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- Ferguson, Kate (3 October 2017). "Home Secretary Amber Rudd fuels rumours of Tory leadership bid by recruiting Cameron's election guru – even though he was behind May's election disaster this year". Daily Mail.
- "Send for Lynton! Is calling in Crosby proof that Amber Rudd wants to be PM?". The Guardian. 3 October 2017.
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|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Amber Rudd.|
- Profile at Parliament of the United Kingdom
- Contributions in Parliament at Hansard 2010–present
- Record in Parliament at TheyWorkForYou
- Articles authored at Journalisted
|Parliament of the United Kingdom|
|Member of Parliament
for Hastings and Rye
|Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change
as Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy