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In 2016, Dominic Raab, who has just launched his campaign to become leader of the Conservative party and potentially prime minister, was asked what he thought of the gender pay gap, and in response, he simply said 'pass'.

Raab, who has served as MP of Esher and Walton since his election in 2010, declined to comment when he was asked by the Surrey Cometabout the median earning statistics showing that men in the borough earn £484.20 more than women per month, based on overtime.

Overall, that discrepancy adds up to men earning £5,800 more than women per year, reports the paper. When the Surrey Comet got in touch with him requesting comment, he responded with a one-word reply via text:

Pass.

This isn't the only controversial comment Raab has made regards women's rights and feminism. On Wednesday this week ITV News asked Raab whether he would 'describe himself as a feminist' to which he responded:

No, probably not.

The reporter also asked him about comments he made in 2011, when he described feminists as 'obnoxious bigots'. In response, he attempted to emphasise that he's pro 'equality':

The point I was making is that sexism is wrong and it’s wrong if it’s said about a woman or about a man and I think equality is too precious a value for us to put up with double standards.

I do think we should call hypocrisy out in political debate and political life.

He has previously spoken out against positive discrimination, and what he calls 'anti-meritocratic' gender quotas. Writing on his blog in 2011, the MP said:

I have to say I am fed up with the militant agenda that belittles the enormous progress Britain has made in becoming a more tolerant and open society.

Of course, there are still social creases in modern Britain. But, the gender pay gap has halved since the 1970s.

We need less of the 1970s gender warfare that pits the couples against each other in an outdated battle of the sexes.

We need more family friendly policies, like transferable parental leave, so couples can choose how to share the responsibilities of being breadwinners and child-carers between them – a common challenge most couples go through together.

So, all in all, what do we think about Raab's leadership bid? It's a no from us!

HT Surrey Comet

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