Corby’s MP has given resolute backing to his county colleague in the race to be Tory leader and has revealed he is in her core campaign team.
Tom Pursglove has confirmed his support for Andrea Leadsom, MP for South Northamptonshire, in the Conservative leadership contest.
Out of the five original candidates, Leadsom remains in the race alongside Michael Gove and favourite Theresa May.
Leadsom started as a relative unknown but has gained a surprising amount of support including from former leaders Lord Howard and Iain Duncan Smith.
Although in recent days, reporters have claimed that Leadsom has exaggerated her business credentials.
Speaking on social media, Tom Pursglove said: “In the contest that is now unfolding, it is essential that we get the decision right - big decisions will need to be made, strong negotiation skills will be critical, and leadership is key. I have already stressed my very strong belief that candidates will need to clearly and authoritatively articulate their plans for exiting the EU - delivering on the vision set out by the ‘Vote Leave’ campaign.
“At the same time, the victor must also comprehensively deliver the manifesto commitments we made, and which were supported by the British people, at the general election.
“It is for these reasons that I have decided to actively support, and vote for, Andrea Leadsom MP - indeed, I am involved in her core campaign team.
“Not only have I seen Andrea in action locally, as a Northamptonshire colleague, but I have also been hugely impressed by her ministerial work to date - as both economic secretary to the treasury, and as minister of state for energy & climate change.
“She would also be a formidable force in the EU ‘exit’ negotiations ahead and would lead from the front, having set up the the Fresh Start Project in 2011 with two of our colleagues, Chris Heaton-Harris MP and George Eustice MP. This project delved deeply into the EU reform agenda, proposing a credible reform plan that, if it had been adopted, would have seen membership of the EU work better, and in the interests of all its members.
“Andrea also had a twenty-five year career in finance before becoming an MP; spent four years as a high profile member of the Treasury Select Committee and then a year as city minister. Her main passion, however, is for social justice - to see a transformation of our society through a new focus on the emotional health of the nation, which begins in babyhood. Self-confidence, an ability to learn, to build strong relationships - the foundations are laid in the very early years, and she is determined to secure a new approach.
“So, as you can see, Andrea is a well-rounded candidate, would be a formidable Leader of the Conservative Party and Prime Minister, has strong outside experience - which will be crucial at this critical time for our country - along with the determination, know-how, and ideas to deliver on the EU ‘exit’. Andrea therefore has my absolute backing and support - I really do trust her to deliver for our country and if you too would like to support her campaign”.