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Tory Leadership contest: Tom Tugendhat makes it to final five with Rishi Sunak, Penny Mordaunt, Liz Truss and Kemi Badenoch

Tom Tugendhat has made it to the next round of the Tory leadership battle.

The Tonbridge and Malling MP launched his campaign in the Telegraph last week and managed to secure the support of 30 fellow MPs to get to the second round of voting.

Tom Tugendhat has spoken to KentOnline (57979863)
Tom Tugendhat has spoken to KentOnline (57979863)

Today, he made it to the final five and will now go head to head with Rishi Sunak, Penny Mordaunt, Liz Truss and Kemi Badenoch to make it to the final two.

He beat Suella Braverman but lost support along the way. After the first round he received 37 votes, today he had just 32.

He soon put to bed any speculation that this would lead to his withdrawal from the race by saying: "Thank you to all my friends and colleagues who have pledged their support.

"We need trust back in our politics. I will be putting my vision for Britain forward to the public at the TV debates next week."


Mr Tugendhat has been a surprising fronterunner in the race which began after Boris Johnson agreed to step down last week.

While the Ashford MP Damian green was recruited to the campaign he has not had any other public declarations of support from any other Kent MPs.

But, if there is one thing we have learned about Tom Tugendhat it is that he has limitless energy and boundless ideas. Beyond that the former soldier clearly knows how to manage a campaign and lead a team.

In pitching himself as the outsider and someone who was not immersed in the government’s recent travails, his appeal has been that he was not like the others.

Before the ballot today, he urged MPs to vote for someone who was not tainted by events of the last two years.

It was probably an appeal that was designed as much for the public at large as it was to MPs.

He has never made any secret of his desire for the top job, preferring candour about his ambitions above the verbal gymnastics used by some.

Perhaps the campaign has been weighted too much towards his claim to be the only candidate that could reverse the reputation of politicians and restore the trust that has been lost. The call for ‘new start’ in politics was a decent strapline for the campaign but needs more fleshing out.

There has been a lighter tone to his campaign in the final run-in, with a quick fire question and answer session posted on his Twitter feed.

Asked to reveal something about him that might surprise people, he said that he only ever wore army socks.

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