Conservative MP Dame Caroline Spelman says she will back Rory Stewart in the next round of votes, crediting him for his “realistic and positive vision for Britain”.
Stewart has gained ground today after Paul Masterton, MP for East Renfrewshire, announced he was supporting the International Development Secretary just hours after creative industries minister Margot James backed him.
Defence minister Tobias Ellwood also publicly supported Mr Stewart yesterday ahead of his lauded performance on the Channel 4 leadership debate in which he won over supporters for his straight-talking views on Brexit.
He is now the second favourite to take over from Theresa May according to the bookmakers, overtaking Jeremy Hunt and Michael Gove who have seen their price drop.
After yesterday’s TV debates, I’m very pleased to now support @RoryStewartUK. His realistic and positive vision for Britain promises to reach out to a broad audience, especially young people. Rory can bring people together and unite the country. #RoryForLeader— Dame Caroline Spelman MP (@spelmanc) June 17, 2019
But Boris Johnson’s chances of becoming the next leader were also given a boost after former contender Matt Hancock backed him.
He said he was “almost certain to win the contest” as odds on the former foreign secretary dropped as low as 1-12 with some bookmakers.