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Andrea Leadsom’s Tory Leadership Times Interview Was A ‘Cock Up’, Admits Campaign Manager

On July 9, The Times ran an interview with Leadsom in which the then energy minister said being a mother meant she had “a very real stake in the future” of the country.

May and her husband have been unable to have children. Leadsom’s comments were taken as a personal attack on the then home secretary.

Leadsom was appointed environment secretary by May when the new prime minister formed her first cabinet.

In an interview at the Festival with comedian Matt Forde, Loughton said the Times interview should never have taken place. “It was a really rookie mistake,” he said.

“It was a cock up. She wasn’t supposed to give any interviews over that weekend. It had been a completely knackering week. So on that Thursday evening I told her go home, get some rest and get your head round the fact she was going to have a nine week campaign that could end up in her being prime minister. Don’t do any interviews.

“Then some idiot press officer somehow got her to do an interview which happened in Starbucks in Milton Keynes, which is never a good place to do an interview, with Rachel Sylvester from The Times, who was never going to be her friend, without recording it.”

Loughton added: “That’s what journalists can do, they took her to bits on that.”

The Tory MP insisted Leadsom had in no way attempted to make a contrast between her family and May’s. “What she was saying was the thing that really motivates me is my kids. Since when has it been a crime to take pride in your kids? And she does. It’s a big thing for her,” he said.

“She was being set up all the way along. The next thing that was coming we were told, they were going to try and make her do an interview that would say ‘Theresa is not up to it [being prime minister] because of her diabetes’. Which was never an issue. A journalist was setting her up.”

One of the most memorable moments of Leadsom’s campaign was a protest march of MPs and activists through Westminster. Leading from the front, Loughton was filmed shouting: “What do we want? Leadsom for leader. When do we want it? Now.”

Article source: http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2016/08/21/andrea-leadsoms-tory-leadership-times-interview-was-a-cock-up-admits-campaign-manager_n_11648516.html?utm_hp_ref=uk-politics&ir=UK+Politics