The Telegraph: Rory Stewart gave a speech that blew his Tory leadership rivals out of the water

In The Telegraph, Michael Deacon describes Rory as “different from the other Tory leadership contenders in just about every significant way” after his leadership launch event last night:

On Tuesday evening, Mr Stewart launched his campaign in a crimson circus tent.

It sounds eccentric. But I’d rather say idiosyncratic. Because – apart from the odd semi-mystical flourish about “energy” and “the wisdom of humility” – Mr Stewart’s speech wasn’t dismissible as quirky or daft, an amusing little sideshow. It was serious. It showed intelligence, wit, maturity, and real feeling. It extolled such unfashionable conservative virtues as moderation, and the spirit of compromise, and economic prudence, and realism. And it elegantly dismantled what he called the “fairy stories” of both Jeremy Corbyn, and the leadership rivals who believe, or claim to believe, that a no-deal Brexit would be easy.

His way of answering questions marked him out from his rivals, too. His answers were direct, without the customary sneaky evasions; but they were also reflective, discursive, well structured, thought through. Not soundbites, but little off-the-cuff essays. More importantly than that, he didn’t simply tell the person in the audience what he or she wanted to hear.

In short, Mr Stewart made most of his rivals look like what they are: contestants on The Apprentice. Reality TV wannabes. Glib, shiny, superficial, and, as far as the viewer can make out, desperate to win for no better reason than winning itself.

Read the full article here.

Rory Stewart