Politician. Hague's meteoric rise to the leadership of the Conservative Party was assisted by the shattering defeat of 1997, which removed from Parliament a number of potential rivals. President of the Oxford Union (1981), he was returned for Richmond (Yorks.) in 1989. He served as minister for social security 1994–5 and secretary of state for Wales 1995–7. From 1997 his political task was to restore morale and credibility to a battered and divided party. He became a redoubtable Commons performer, quite capable of bruising the Labour prime minister, Tony Blair. But after the Conservatives failed at the general election of 2001 to make any progress, Hague resigned immediately. From 2005 he has served as shadow Foreign Secretary.
Subjects: Politics — British History.