Liz Truss has received a boost in her bid to replace Boris Johnson after winning the backing of former rival Penny Mordaunt.
Federal Minister Ms Mordaunt narrowly lost to Ms Truss for a place in the bottom two in the race for the Conservative Party leadership with Rishi Sunak.
Ms Mordaunt opened the recent Hustings in Exeter by backing Foreign Secretary Ms Truss, calling her the “hopeful candidate”.
The Portsmouth North MP said the Conservatives would “change the country briefly, we could lose an election” if they get the decision wrong.
As I’ve seen her over the past few weeks, I’ve wanted to help her, help her win, build the team we need to win the country, and give us as a party and as a nation the pride and confidence that we need to reach our full potentialPenny Mordaunt on Liz Truss
She said, “I couldn’t have stayed signed in, I could be sipping pina coladas right now, but I’m not because that’s too important and I’m not going to leave that to chance.”
Noting that it was difficult to choose between the two candidates, Ms Mordaunt added: “Who can lead? Who can build this team and deliver for our country? Who has this bold economic plan that our nation needs?
“Who has reach? Who can relate to people? Who understands that people need help with living expenses now? And who will rightly thrash our opponents?
“Who will hold seats and win back councils and who most embodies the vision and values that the British public had in their minds and hearts when they voted in 2016 and 2019?
“At the start of this final phase of this competition, I didn’t know the answer to those questions, but I’ve seen enough to know who to put my trust in – and that’s Liz Truss. ”
Tory members cheered the announcement, with Ms Mordaunt adding: “Her transplant, her authenticity, her determination, her ambition for this country, her steadfastness and sense of duty – she knows what she believes in and her determination to stand up against tyranny rise up and fight for freedom.
“That’s what our country stands for and that’s why I know we can win with her.
“And indeed, seeing her over the past few weeks has made me want to help her, help her win, help build the team we need to win the country and us as a party and as a To give the nation the pride and confidence we need to reach our full potential.
“In short, folks, to give us all hope. She is the hopeful candidate for me.”
Ms Truss said of Ms Mordaunt in her opening remarks: “She’s a great person, she’s a great politician, she’s a great patriot and I’m proud to call her my friend.”
The unity between the two Conservative MPs came in stark contrast to previous exchanges in the leadership campaign, which have seen Ms Truss allies deny involvement in a “black ops” campaign against Ms Mordaunt.
https://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/uk/penny-mordaunt-endorses-ex-leadership-rival-liz-truss-to-replace-boris-johnson-41882991.html Penny Mordaunt endorses ex-leadership rival Liz Truss to replace Boris Johnson