SUELLA Braverman was my chosen candidate, but my article today is more about what I hope to see from whoever wins.
Following the brutal defenestration of the current Prime Minister, feelings are raw and running high.
However, as a pragmatist, now the damage is done, it’s time to move on.
The contenders for the top job are rightly being thoroughly quizzed on their vision for the country’s future and that scrutiny will only intensify as the numbers are whittled down.
They have a lot to cope with.
And, for Conservatives, the challenge is even greater, emerging as we have from the pandemic, with high taxes, rising costs and inflation, and an expectation that big government can solve all our woes.
We must return to our core beliefs – and the Conservative philosophy is the simplest.
It’s freedom of the individual, less state and a safety net for those who genuinely need it.
Brexit, which has dogged our politics for years, must be finalised, with concerns over the Northern Irish Protocol resolved.
And he, or she, will have to stand firm on unrealistic pay demands from the public sector, which only fuels inflation and punishes the private sector, which ultimately foots the bill.
Windfall taxes are not the way forward, either, only deterring investment and strangling innovation, especially in the oil and gas sector, which has increased in significance since the war in Ukraine.
The rush to Net Zero clashes directly with our energy security and more realistic goals must be set.
Other top priorities include food and defence security, for too long ignored and underfunded.
However, as politicians, we cannot possibly please everyone, but gaining respect is key.