Consultation with Conservative members over Leadership of our party

I am consulting widely over who would be best as the final two candidates for members to vote on in  the forthcoming contest. Nominations close on June 10th, to be followed by a short and intensive series of votes over the following days to reduce what might  be a long list down to just 2 for final selection in a members’ ballot.

The idea is that as the Leader has the difficult job of   leading of the Parliamentary party it is best for MPs to get it down to two, so either will have a reasonable starting level of MP  support on election. I am happy to take advice from members, and to put worries of members to particular candidates. There are plenty of conversations going on between MPs already, before the contest proper starts. All the candidates are of course well known to me as we have been working together as colleagues for a considerable time. In an ideal world the MPs and the members agree on the best two, with the members then deciding  between them.

I do not yet have one preferred candidate, so I am open to persuasion and advice. Some of them seem to me to  be unlikely to attract much support and to lack the skills and or platform to be suitable. I doubt all the current would be runners will put in nomination papers.


  1. nhsgp
    May 29, 2019

    Rory. He was on LBC the other day.

    Please elect me because I’ve introduce a new tax.

    I think that rules him out.

  2. Narrow Shoulders
    May 29, 2019

    Can you ask each one about their thoughts on the demographics of their cabinet?

    New faces, tired faces, wise old fox faces?

    What are their thoughts on entryism?

    Will the split between leavers and remainers mirror the parliamentary party or the country?

  3. Rob Pearce
    May 30, 2019

    For me we are looking at Boris, Leadsom or Dom Raab.

    The winner has to have the fortitude to ride out the ferocious attacks from Remain in Parliament, including the Speaker, who incidentally should be prosecuted for not carrying out his constitutional duty for impartiality over Brexit. Also the attacks from any Whitehall advisors left in No 10. They will all be fighting desperately knowing this is it.

    Although he did vote for WAB3, Raab has subsequently established himself a determined WTO man, vis his performance on Marr last Sunday. He will ride it out.

  4. Lesley Sinclair
    May 30, 2019

    A ‘no-no’ for me was any candidate who had previously voted for Mrs May’s appalling WA. However, that rules out all of the candidates as they’ve ALL voted for it at one point or another! So it at least needs to be a candidate who is not afraid of leaving on 31st Oct on WTO terms.

    A definite requirement is for them to have voted to leave in the 2016 referendum. Please, no ‘born-again’ Leavers.

    I think they will have a huge task of facing down the likes of Speaker Bercow and Chancellor Hammond, who today on TV says he will bring down the government rather than permit ‘no deal’. I find that astonishing. So it needs to be someone with more than a little backbone, determination and optimism to carry through our instruction. I want to know what their plans are to deliver this instruction and what their plans are from 1st Nov onwards.

    My choice would definitely be Steve Baker but we must wait to see if he declares. I like Priti Patel very much too, but the same applies. I was impressed today by Esther McVey on Sky giving a very spirited case for coming out on 31st Oct on WTO terms and refusing any further extension. Of the rest, Dominic Raab rates well, followed by Boris and maybe Andrea Leadsom. Jesse Norman came over well on TV earlier too.

    A very crowded field but, for me, it must be between leave-voters only. Messrs Hunt, Hancock, Javid and the like don’t qualify. I do not trust Michael Gove at all, and Rory Stewart is quite simply in the wrong party.

  5. Alan Jutson
    May 31, 2019

    Dominic Raab is growing on me with his rather clearer and more sensible statements, many of the others still look like they are totally confused, and are giving out unclear and mixed messages.

    Esther McVey with clarity of thought has also made some very good fundamental statements, but has she the management strength to lead ?

    Steve Baker, same applies to him as McVey, but probably too much of a Brexiteer to get the Mp’s votes in numbers, which is a shame.

    Boris is the popular wild card, but do we really need a popular wild card ?

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