London: Britain’s Conservative politician Andrea Leadsom has pulled out of the contest for becoming the next Tory party leader and prime minister, leaving only Home Secretary Theresa May in the race.
A source close to the energy minister said “the abuse has been too great”, BBC reported.
Leadsom was up against Home Secretary Theresa May in the race to succeed David Cameron as the Prime Minister, and apologised to May on Monday after suggesting that being a mother made her (May) a better candidate for the job.
BBC reported that Cameron’s successor could now be in place “much earlier than nine September” — when the contest was due to finish.
It will be up to the 1922 committee of Conservative MPs to decide the timetable — or whether to continue with a leadership contest.
If it is decided that May is to become leader, uncontested, she would become prime minister-designate or “PM elect” only upon the declaration by the 1922.
The time between Gordon Brown winning the Labour leadership uncontested and succeeding Tony Blair as the Prime Minister was 38 days.
Leadsom — who was a leading light of the Brexit campaign — made it to the final two, alongside May — who campaigned for ‘Remain’ vote — last week.
She secured the support of 84 MPs — including former Tory leader Iain Duncan Smith and Boris Johnson — compared to May’s 199 votes. Justice Secretary Michael Gove was eliminated after coming third.
There had originally been five contenders to succeed Cameron, with MPs voting in two rounds to get that number down to two — with party’s 150,000-strong membership to have the final say.