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Kemi Badenoch: The anti-woke Brexiteer making waves in the Tory leadership race

It may not seem very likely this time round, because she is probably a little too far behind in the MPs ballot, but there is every chance that Olukemi Olufunto Badenoch, known as Kemi, will end up in Number 10 Downing Street. At 42, she has time on her side, and she has a level of talent and lashings of ambition, as she herself admits.

She enjoys the generous support of mentorship of Michael Gove, who was her ministerial boss before her resignation and his sacking from the Levelling Up department during last week’s convulsions. “She is brave, principled, brilliant and kind” says Gove, adding that she has led the charge against “mumbo jumbo peddled by left-wing culture warriors” (which is a bit of mumbo jumbo itself, but we’ll let that slide). Such a Svengali figure as Gove could turn out to be a mixed blessing – one wonders what’s in it for him – but for now he’s her most high profile backer and adviser.

Badenoch’s unexpectedly strong performance in the early stages of the contest – she far outstripped cabinet and former cabinet ministers Sajid Javid, Nadhim Zahawi, Jeremy Hunt and Suella Braverman – almost certainly guarantees her a middle ranking post in cabinet, at least, and a potential springboard to the top job one day. She’s already served as a minister for children, equalities, housing and at the Treasury, so she’s had wide experience, especially for someone who only came into the Commons, for the safe seat of Saffron Walden, in 2017, so actually post-referendum.

Xural.com

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