Jacob Rees-Mogg has denied claims he is considering launching a leadership bid to replace Theresa May. Reports on Sunday said the Conservative MP was weighing up whether he should enter the race to succeed May whose leadership has been brought into question following a disastrous general election campaign.
Both the Sunday Times and the Mail on Sunday carried reports the eccentric North East Somerset MP and treasury select committee member was mulling whether he should toss his hat into the ring. The news came after Rees-Mogg was voted the second-most popular choice to become the next Conservative leader in a poll by the ConservativeHome website.
But questioned about his intentions, Rees-Mogg told BBC Radio 4: "I think it's a reminder that it's August and people don't have pressing UK political news to write about. And therefore there's this jolly stuff about me, but I wouldn't put any money on it."
"I think if I threw my hat in the ring, my hat would be thrown back at me pretty quickly," he also told the Sunday Times.
With his double-breasted suits, colourful vocabulary and confident media appearances, father of six Rees-Mogg, whose nickname is "the Honourable Member for the early 20th Century", has attracted a large online following.
The Twitter account MoggMentum - a riff on the Labour grassroots movement Momentum that helped propel Jeremy Corbyn to become its party leader - has almost 8,000 followers and is described as "A grass roots movement to get @Jacob_Rees_Mogg into Number 10 - Time to get the youth back on side!"
One recent post read: "An intellectual, principled, true patriot who isn't afraid to have a laugh and enjoy himself. Who wouldn't want this man as PM? #MoggMentum"
The MP himself has more than 40,000 followers on Instagram and 29,000 likes on Facebook.