UK & World News
MP Top Trumps: David Cameron's Rising Stars
The Prime Minister's battle plan for the General Election begins with a Cabinet reshuffle. Find out the ones to watch.
Who: Nicky Morgan, MP for Loughborough since 2010 Born and brought up: Kingston upon Thames, Surbiton Education: Jurisprudence at St Hugh's College, Oxford Before politics: Solicitor on corporate law, specialising in mergers and acquisitions. Joined Tories in 1989 and was chair of Wessex Young Conservatives and vice-chair for Battersea Conservatives. Politics: Fought for Islington South and Finsbury seat in 2001. Fought for Loughborough seat in 2005. Constituency campaigns: Cash for potholes, entrepreneurs, housing, local libraries, business. Old jobs: Assistant whip, financial secretary to the Treasury, minister for women. New job: Education Secretary - continues with women and equalities brief. Tells Sky News she is "very excited" Home life: Married to an architect. One son. Known for: Saying university isn't a rite of passage, praising Loughborough students on rag week, against same-sex marriage, safe pair of hands, time in the whip's office. X Factor: Mother, Osbornite, loyalist.
Who: Liz Truss, MP since 2010 for South West Norfolk Born and brought up: Yorkshire Education: Philosophy, politics and economics at Merton College, Oxford University Before politics: Trained as an accountant. Worked in the energy and telecoms industry. Member of the Conservative Party for 17 years. Proved blue credentials as deputy director of the right-wing think-tank Reform. Politics: Fought for a seat in 2001 and 2005. Published two books arguing for return of entrepreneurship and need to learn from rising nations. Constituency campaigns: Better roads, faster broadband, reliable energy supplies, small businesses. Old job: Education minister, campaigning for a stronger emphasis on academic subjects. New job: Environment Secretary Home life: Lives in London. Married with two daughters. Known for: Attention to detail, unflappable manner. X Factor: Mother (rare in Parliament, rarer in Cabinet). At 38, she is the youngest ever female Cabinet member.
Who: Priti Patel, MP since 2010 for Witham, Essex Born and brought up: South Harrow, Ruislip, Watford Education: Economics, Keele University. Postgraduate at University of Essex Before politics: Director of corporate communications for PR consultancy. Press officer for William Hague. Politics: Fought for a seat in 2005, won different seat in 2010. Against prisoner voting. For capital punishment. Constituency campaigns: Small businesses, affordable homes, transport infrastructure Home life: Lives in Witham and London. Married with a son. Known for: Independently minded. Unpredictable. X Factor: A rebel. Admired by backbenchers. Mother.
Who: Esther McVey, MP for Wirral West since 2010 Born and brought up: Liverpool Education: Law at Queen Mary University, London. Radio journalism at City University, London. MSc in corporate governance at Liverpool John Moores University Before politics: TV presenter and producer, director of her father's demolition business and set up own training business for SMEs. Politics: Fought for seat in 2005. Was parliamentary under-secretary for disabled people. Worked for Chris Grayling and had a Work and Pensions brief. Constituency campaigns: Small businesses, youth unemployment Old job: Employment minister New job: Continues as minister for Employment and Disabilities but will attend Cabinet Home life: Lives in West Kirby and London. Unmarried. Known for: Friend of Kate McCann and helped set up Madeleine McCann Fund. First Tory MP on Merseyside since 1997. X Factor: Feisty and outspoken. Liverpudlian accent ticks the Northern box. Strong media performer. Nominated for Merseyside Woman of the Year and Cheshire Woman of the Year.
Who: Penny Mordaunt, MP for Portsmouth North since 2010 Born and brought up: Torquay, Portsmouth Education: Philosophy at University of Reading Before politics: Magician's assistant, communications director for Kensington and Chelsea Council, worked for Freight Transport Association, director of National Lottery, director of Diabetes UK, head of foreign press for George W Bush's 2000 campaign. Politics: Head of Youth for Tories. First fought for a seat in 2005. Care and quality of life for elderly, healthcare, arts, space. Constituency campaigns: Portsmouth Naval Base and Royal Navy fleet. Charities. Restoring Grade-II listed manor. Current job: Ministerial aide Home life: Lives in Port Solent with partner and breeds Burmese cats. Sub-lieutenant in Royal Navy Reserve. Known for: Belly-flop on TV diving competition Splash! Second woman to give thank you after Queen's Speech - in it, she talked about testicles. Supporting women in Armed Forces. Named after frigate HMS Penelope. Critic of women-only shortlists. Supporter of homeopathy. member of British Astronomical Association. X Factor: Have-a-go attitude.