'Colourful character' Boris Johnson top choice among South Tyneside Tories, says Conservative leader
Jack White, chairman of South Tyneside Conservatives, also believes Mr Johnson will seek to support the North East’s ambitions for economic growth, and bring in fairer taxation for all.
He delivered his verdict after the Mr Johnson yesterday overwhelmingly defeated challenger Jeremy Hunt in the race to replace Theresa May as the next PM.
Mr White, 22, who became local association chair in March when the South Shields and Jarrow branches merged, said: “I think it’s good news, he will give the party a lift.
“The message from the recent local and European elections was clear – a change in leadership was needed.
“There is a massive hole at the centre of British politics at the moment, so I hope Boris Johnson will deliver Brexit, but I think he also a vision beyond that.
“He is a colourful character who can unite what has become a divided party. He will bring in tax reform and bring a balanced approach to the economy.
“He is the only person who can defeat Jeremy Corbyn, and keep the Brexit Party out. He will also lower corporation tax and lower income tax for all workers.”
Mr White, a history and politics student at Newcastle University, believes the majority of Conservative party members in South Tyneside supported Mr Johnson over Mr Hunt.
He said the reasons included his pledge to deliver Brexit on time on October 31, and his underlying optimism.
And Mr White, who voted to remain in the EU during the referendum but respects the vote to leave, added: “I’d say that two-thirds of the local members I spoke to favoured Boris.
“The big thing over Mr Hunt is delivering Brexit on time, and in one of the debates he said the country needs optimism.
“Boris’ track record as London Mayor was also good – he improved the police, helped reduce crime and did other good things.
“He was also recently in Darlington, where he spoke of his vision for the north, including a pledge to look at local infrastructure.”