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Michael Gove endorses Tory leadership candidate Rishi Sunak

  • Michael Gove has stated that he will support Rishi Sunak for the position of Conservative Party leader.
  • The former chancellor is concerned that Liz Truss’ tax policies would prioritise the wealth of executives over the poorest members of society.
  • Mr Gove was recently fired as Levelling Up Secretary after publicly urging Boris Johnson to quit as Prime Minister.

 

Michael Gove has stated that he will support Rishi Sunak for the position of Conservative Party leader, claiming that he possesses the necessary qualifications.

The former levelling up secretary told the Times rival Liz Truss’ tax policies would prioritise the wealth of executives over the poorest members of society, calling the plans a “holiday from reality.”

He also stated that he does not intend to return to frontbench politics.

It comes as Mr Sunak announces plans he claims will benefit British motorists.

The former chancellor is competing with Foreign Secretary Ms Truss for the position of Conservative Party leader to succeed outgoing Prime Minister Boris Johnson. The outcome will be announced on September 5th.

Several cabinet members have publicly backed Ms Truss, who is also the betting favourite.

Mr Gove backed Kemi Badenoch earlier in the campaign, but in a letter published on Saturday, he stated that he now supports Mr Sunak, casting doubt on Ms Truss’s plans to deal with rising prices and living costs.

He said “Proposed cuts to national insurance would favour the wealthy, and changes to corporation tax apply to big businesses, not small entrepreneurs. I cannot see how safeguarding the stock options of FTSE 100 executives should ever take precedence over supporting the poorest in our society, but at a time of want it cannot be the right priority.”

He went on: “And here I am deeply concerned that the framing of the leadership debate by many has been a holiday from reality. The answer to the cost-of-living crisis cannot be simply to reject further ‘handouts’ and cut tax.”

Mr Gove stated that Mr Sunak’s tax increases as chancellor were “a result of Covid, not Rishi’s inner preferences.”

“I know what the job requires. And Rishi has it,” he said.

Mr Gove also stated that he does not intend to return to frontbench politics, writing: “I do not intend to run for office again. But it was the greatest honour of my life to serve in the cabinet for 11 years under three prime ministers.”

Mr Gove lost his own leadership bids in 2016 and 2019, and he was recently fired as Levelling Up Secretary after publicly urging Mr Johnson to resign as prime minister before his eventual resignation.

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