James Forsyth

It will be a closer race than expected between May and Leadsom

It will be a closer race than expected between May and Leadsom
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Most Tory MPs are back in their constituencies today, and several of those that I have spoken to are now predicting a closer race between May and Leadsom than Westminster expected.

One May supporting MP tells me that the councillors they have spoken to are intrigued by Leadsom, a fresh face they want to hear more about. There’s also a view among many members, I’m told, that MPs wouldn’t have sent Leadsom through to the final two if she wasn’t qualified to be Prime Minister.

For the next few weeks, I intend to take all polling of Tory members on this race with a pinch of salt. Why? Because Leadsom -- unlike Boris, say -- isn’t that well known and so her numbers could go up, or down, when members hear more about her, her experience and her views.