Mike Freer MP ‘delighted’ that Theresa May will be PM by Wednesday
PUBLISHED: 18:32 11 July 2016 | UPDATED: 10:39 12 July 2016
Finchley and Golders Green’s Tory MP Mike Freer has said he is “delighted” that Theresa May will become Prime Minister on Wednesday after her opponent in the Conservative leadership race, Andrea Leadsom, stood aside.
David Cameron announced this afternoon he will leave Downing Street after his last Parliamentary session of Prime Minister’s Questions on Wednesday, allowing Mrs May to take charge of the country.
Mr Freer had championed Mrs May as the next Tory Party leader in the wake of the Brexit fall-out, and said today: “As one of those MPs who declared support for Theresa May from the outset, I am delighted that we will have a new Prime Minister who has the calm resolute temperament to steer the country through the unsettled next few months.
“As the longest serving Home Secretary in recent times, she has a proven track record of getting the job done.”
Mr Freer said last week that he would be glad to see a woman in the top job because he was such an admirer of Britain’s only previous female PM, Margaret Thatcher, who was also the long-serving MP for Finchley.
Mrs May’s former opponent, Mrs Leadsom, dropped out of the race earlier today following a weekend storm over comments she made in an interview with The Times.
Leave campaigner Mrs Leadsom said that as a mother, she has more of “a stake in society” than Mrs May, who has no children, provoking an immediate backlash and a hastily issued apology.
Today Mrs Leadsom gave in to pressure to stand aside, leaving the field clear for Remain campaigner Theresa May to take charge of both the Conservatives and the country.
Mr Cameron said today: “I am delighted we are not going to have a prolonged Conservative election campaign. I think Andrea Leadsom has made absolutely the right decision to stand aside, and it’s clear Theresa May has the overwhelming support of the Conservative parliamentary party.”
He said that Mrs May would have his total backing and that he would offer his resignation to the Queen on Wednesday, allowing Mrs May to move into Number 10 by the evening.
Mrs May was in Camden last Thursday to address a private party for local Conservatives, in which she reiterated her belief that “Brexit means Brexit” - seemingly closing the door on the possibility of a second Referendum.
In the same speech - made the day she launched her leadership bid - Mrs May also ruled out calling a snap general election in the event of her becoming Prime Minister, and said she would look to negotiate the best possible post-Brexit deal for Britain.
But if she is unable to unite the warring factions within her own party, the new leader could find it difficult to get any legislation through the House, as the government has a slender majority of just 12 MPs.
Leader of Camden Conservatives, Claire-Louise Leyland, had also endorsed Mrs May in the leadership contest, saying she had “all the right qualities and the experience” to unify the party and lead the country through uncertain times.