James Cleverly becomes ELEVENTH Tory to join leadership contest to be next PM – Mirror Online
There are now ELEVEN Tory MPs standing to be the next Prime Minister after a Brexit Minister threw his hat into the ring.
James Cleverly only won his seat in 2015 but claimed he could “deliver the change” the country needs after the failed reign of Theresa May .
Despite being a fierce defender of the PM until she resigned, the 49-year-old today admitted: “She didn’t fit well with the role of Prime Minister”.
The Braintree MP and former Territorial Army Major would become the first PM from an ethnic minority background if he was elected.
He served on the London Assembly from 2007 before joining Parliament and rising to a Tory Vice Chairman and Brexit Minister.
He sparked fury in 2013 by calling for the minimum wage to be scrapped.
According to the Evening Standard, he made the call during a Tory conference event hosted by the right-wing, anti-state pressure group Taxpayers’ Alliance.
TPA chairman Matthew Sinclair said: “I want no explanation or justification, I want you to name a tax or a regulation that you would most like to see scrapped.”
When he got to Mr Cleverly the assembly member is said to have called out: “Minimum wage.”
The famously plain-speaking MP also admitted smoking cannabis and watching online porn in a radio interview shortly after becoming an MP.
Today Mr Cleverly said he would “absolutely” lead the UK out of the EU in a No Deal Brexit if needed.
But he said it would add “uncertainty” and “it is not my preferred destination”.
He said the UK should “look to” deliver Brexit on time, but did not to rule out a possible delay beyond October 31.
“I’ve always said we need to be pragmatic, we need to be sensible, we need to leave with a deal,” he said.
He said the Tories need a leader “who truly believes in the opportunity Brexit presents”.
He told the Braintree and Witham Times: “Once Brexit is delivered, we then need to think about how we can make the Conservatives look new and sound different.
“From the politics we have seen in the last two years, it is clear it needs a complete refresh.
“We need a change and I believe I am the right person to deliver that change.”
This article originally appeared here in https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/politics/james-cleverly-becomes-eleventh-tory-16217742