Theresa May wins first round of Conservative leadership vote

Reporter:

Nicola Hine

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Theresa May talks Brexit and the Conservative Party leadership

Theresa May has won the first round of the Conservative leadership vote, and received the backing of two of the other candidates who are no longer in the running.

The Maidenhead MP took a comfortable lead, topping the ballot today with 165 of the 329 votes cast.

She was followed by Andrea Leadsom, with 66 votes, and Michael Gove, with 48.

Dr Liam Fox, who came last with 16 votes, was eliminated and has since come out in support of the Home Secretary, whom he said would make a 'fine Prime Minister'.

Stephen Crabb, who came fourth with 34 votes, has dropped out of the running and also backed Mrs May, saying she is the 'only one candidate who could unite the party'.

As it stands another round of voting will be required to narrow the candidates down to two, before the winner will be decided by party members and revealed on September 9.

The contest came about after current Prime Minister David Cameron announced after the EU referendum result that he would step down from the role later this year.

Mrs May campaigned for the UK to remain in the EU. Both Mrs Leadsom and Mr Gove campaigned for Brexit.

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