Dominic Raab, the man at the helm of the British government while Boris Johnson is hospitalized, has been both an ally and a rival to his boss.
During the Brexit campaign in 2016, Raab campaigned alongside Johnson successfully to break away from the European Union. Three years later, the pair stood against each other in the Conservative Party’s leadership contest.
Johnson won, and then triumphed again in the general election that followed — but it is Raab, a former Foreign Office lawyer, who is now in charge of the government as the prime minister receives treatment in intensive care.
“There’s an incredibly strong team spirit behind the prime minister,” Raab said late on Tuesday. He said he and his colleagues are focused on ensuring Johnson’s instructions are “implemented as soon as possible.”
Raab, 46, has been in Parliament since 2010, but he struggled to rise under former Prime Minister David Cameron. Instead, he became a troublemaker, asking awkward questions of the government and then backing Brexit. That upset voters in his southwest London district, and he came close to losing the usually safe Conservative seat in last year’s election despite a national surge for the Tories.
His chance …