ARMED forces minister Penny Mordaunt is backing Brexit champion Andrea Leadsom as the nation’s future prime minister.
Speaking to The News this morning, the Portsmouth North MP said the energy minister would ‘be great at the helm’.
Ms Leadsom, who previously worked in the City of London before entering politics, was a key figure in the Vote Leave campaign during the EU referendum.
She starred in high-profile television debates alongside former London mayor and PM frontrunner Boris Johnson.
The mother-of-three joins a growing list of contenders to replace David Cameron as Conservative leader.
Ms Mordaunt, who nominated Ms Leadsom, said: ‘Andrea is an amazing woman with tremendous knowledge of the city, of financial services and the economy.
She is a doer and not just a talker. She is an incredibly warm and strong character and I think she would do an amazing job at the helm.Penny Mordaunt, Portsmouth North MP
‘She is also incredibly passionate and compassionate campaigner on a whole variety of issues, in particular better provision of early years care.
‘She very much believes that getting things right for newborns before 18 months old is vitally important.
‘She is a doer and not just a talker. She is an incredibly warm and strong character and I think she would do an amazing job at the helm.’
Others who have thrown their hats into the ring to become the future PM include home secretary Theresa May, work and pensions secretary Stephen Crabb and the ex-defence secretary, Liam Fox.
Portsmouth South MP Flick Drummond and Havant MP Alan Mak are both backing Mrs May as the David Cameron’s successor.
Justice secretary Michael Gove also entered the race in a shock announcement.
He had been expected to back Boris Johnson.
Nominations for candidates close at midday.