Born in Rotterdam, Hugo Deburghraeve became president of the Liberal Student's Union while studying corporate communication in his home town. He switched parties at age 25, however, and quickly became the assistant-secretary of the president of the Conservative Party conference, who soon recognised his talents. After a few years of various positions he became chairman of the party. Recognising his financial savvy and adeptness at selling complicated policy in an understandable way, he was appointed State-Secretary of Finance under Prime Minister Roel Vogels, earning a name for his radical economical views and stubborn resistance to budget increases for the healthcare ministry and the Education ministry of Jan Willem Daatman.
In the running up to the Shadow War, Deburghraeve remained ambigiously silent as to which side he supported and he was not part of the conspiratory meeting that led to many prominent party members leaving the Conservative Party. His opponents have sometimes accused him of fencesitting to see which side would come out on top. He always denied this.
After the RCPK did not get into the post-Shadow War government he became deputy leader of the opposition. A government shakeup in the second administration of Lousewies van der Laan and the retiring of Frits Bolkestein cemented his position as a leading figure in the Staten-Generaal. He wasn't appointed state-secretary of Finance when Galadriël came to power, which led many to speculate that he was aspiring a bigger role. Under the two administrations of Galadriël Táralóm nos Círdan he was seen as a loyal follower of the RCPK ministers in government, warmly endorsing their tax plans. It is publicly known that he is affilliated with the Order of the Invisible Hand.