Conservative Party leadership battle – has Portsmouth North MP Penny Mordaunt dropped hint she will stand for prime minister?

Defence secretary Penny Mordaunt has dropped a major hint she may stand to lead the country as prime minister.

Thursday, 30th May 2019, 10:43 am
Updated Thursday, 30th May 2019, 12:15 pm
Defence secretary Penny Mordaunt in Downing Street, London. Picture: Victoria Jones/PA Wire

The Portsmouth North MP is set to host a conference call with Conservative Party members on Tuesday at 8pm.

It is widely seen as a hint she could enter the race to lead the party - joining the 11 MPs battling it out - including Boris Johnson, Sajid Javid and Jeremy Hunt.

Writing for ConservativeHome, Ms Mordaunt said the ‘inadequacy of politics today goes beyond Brexit’ and called for politicians to provide ‘servant leadership’.

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Defence secretary Penny Mordaunt in Downing Street, London. Picture: Victoria Jones/PA Wire

It echoes calls she made at a think-tank event with Conservative voters in April where she called for the same and said the 'age of hero politicians' is over.

On ConservativeHome today she said: ‘To be a political leader now, when we need to restore trust, confidence and hope, will take more than the usual tired routine.

‘And so this leadership contest cannot mirror those of the past. It has to be more than a fight against competing factions. We must articulate national missions that we can all unite around.’

She added: ‘To unlock our nation’s potential requires a different kind of leadership. Britain needs some humility from its leaders, not just from the candidates in this contest, but from us all.

‘We should trust the people with more than just Brexit. It’s time for some servant leadership.

‘And that starts with listening. So next week, I will host with some of my colleagues what could be the largest live consultation our party has ever undertaken. It will allow views to be expressed on the national missions and how we deliver on them.’