The senior Tory answers the charge that his favourite is too inexperienced
Earlier today, UnHerd’s Freddie Sayers caught up with recently deposed cabinet minister Michael Gove at the launch of his favourite to be the new Tory leader and prime minister, Kemi Badenoch. Does his support denote serious backing for a potential prime minister? Here’s what he had to say.
MG: I’m delighted to be supporting Kemi. I think she’s absolutely fantastic.
FS: Is she experienced enough? Are you worried that she hasn’t got Cabinet experience?
MG: I’ve worked with Kemi, and I’ve seen her take really complex policy issues, get to the heart of them, use systems, thinking, logic, and conservative principles to drive change, to make an argument for change. And then to deliver it. I worked alongside her in Whitehall. And to my mind she has all the policy, intellect and the administrative grip to hit the ground running from day one.
FS: Philosophically she’s thought of as being very strong on cultural issues, but economically, they say she’s Thatcherite. It’s all small government — there’s not much of the “Red Tory” that was so talked about the previous general election. Do you think that’s true? Is she a straightforward Thatcherite economically?
MG: She’s a Badenochite. The key thing about Kemi, when it comes to economics, when it comes to every issue, she faces the facts full on. She believes in limited government and doing less, better. I think it’s absolutely critical that we get the basics right, whether people are in red wall seats, blue wall seats, or wherever. They want a government that is focussed on essentials. And that is what Kemi will deliver.