Andrea Leadsom’s ‘Motherhood’ Comments Spark Leadership Row

Was she misunderstood?

Andrea Leadsom

by Rebecca Cox |
Published on

A row has erupted following the publication of an interview with Conservative leadership hopeful Andrea Leadsom in which she appears to suggest that having children gives her the edge over rival Theresa May.

The comments, which appear in an interview with The Times have led to criticism for Leadsom after May called for a ‘clean campaign’ between the two.

“I feel being a mum means you have a very real stake in the future of our country, a tangible stake,” Leadsom is quoted as saying.

But the mother-of-three has tweeted that she is ‘disgusted’ by the article.

Times journalist Rachel Sylvester has hit back at Leadsom, however, publishing the transcript of the interview in which the Conservative leadership hopeful made the comments.

The transcript is as follows:

Rachel Sylvester: "Do you feel like a mum in politics?"

Andrea Leadsom: "Yes. So...

RS: "Why and how?"

AL: "So really carefully because I am sure, I don't really know Theresa very well but I am sure she will be really really sad she doesn't have children so I don't want this to be 'Andrea has children, Theresa hasn't' because I think that would be really horrible.

"But genuinely I feel being a mum means you have a very real stake in the future of our country, a tangible stake.

"She possibly has nieces, nephews, lots of people, but I have children, who are going to have children, who will directly be a part of what happens next.

"So it really keeps you focused on 'what are you really saying?'. Because what it means is you don't want a downturn but 'never mind, let's look ahead to the ten years', hence it will all be fine. My children will be starting their lives in that next ten years so I have a real stake in the next year, the next two."

Leadsom has called for the article to be retracted. "In front of the Times correspondent and photographer, I made clear repeatedly that nothing I said should be used in any way to suggest that Theresa May not having children had any bearing whatever on the leadership election.

"I expect the Times to retract the article and the accompanying headline."

READ MORE: Theresa, Andrea and Angela: Who Are They?

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