North East Derbyshire MP Lee Rowley backs Boris Johnson to be the next Prime Minister

North East Derbyshire MP Lee Rowley.
North East Derbyshire MP Lee Rowley.

North East Derbyshire MP Lee Rowley has today voted for Boris Johnson as the next leader of the Conservative Party and the new Prime Minister.

The first round of the Tory leadership battle is taking place today and a result is expected this afternoon.

More ballots will be held next week and the winner will be announced on July 22.

Mr Rowley said the country needed a 'leader with vision' who 'will take the country through these tough times' and that is why Mr Johnson got his vote in the first round.

"Whilst we need to find a leader who can take us forward on Brexit we also need to realise that there are a whole suite of other policies which we need to do better on," Mr Rowley wrote on his website.

"North East Derbyshire is interested in Brexit but it is more interested in jobs, schools, hospitals and roads – and I want us to rebalance the conversation back on to policies which improve the day-to-day lives of everyone working hard in places like Dronfield or Clay Cross.

"Having read all of the messages from residents in recent days, I made my decision yesterday and, accordingly, voted for Boris Johnson today as the positive choice for taking our country forward. I hope he is successful in the coming weeks."

He added: "Now, I know some people will very much like the decision I have made and some will not. Boris is someone who elicits strong emotions in people and that was reflected in the feedback I received from the constituency. Overall, however, the clear message from those in the constituency who got in touch was to vote for Boris.

"The United Kingdom has got itself into a hole in the last year. Getting out of this hole is going to be very difficult – indeed, there is a chance we may struggle to do that in the next few months – but we have to try. And, in my view, the best person to do that is someone with a vision, someone who can convince the country to go forward and who make a fresh start after the difficulties of the last year. For me, that man is Boris."