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Andrea Leadsom Faces Criticism Over Motherhood Quotes

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Andrea Leadsom is facing criticism after appearing to suggest that being a mother gives her a "very real stake" in the future of the U.K. that her rival to become the next Prime Minister, Theresa May, lacks because she does not have children.

Leadsom, a mother of three, is quoted by The Times as saying: "I am sure Theresa will be 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 that 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," Leadsom is quoted by The Times as saying next.

Today's issue of The Times features as its headline a paraphrased version of these quotes, which reads: "Being a mother gives me edge on May - Leadsom." After The Times shared its front cover last night, Leadsom claimed the headline was "truly appalling and the exact opposite of what I said."


In another tweet directed at the newspaper and the reporter who conducted the interview, Rachel Sylvester, Leadsom accused The Times of perpetrating "gutter journalism."
However, the newspaper's deputy editor, Emma Tucker, has since tweeted a transcript of its interview with Leadsom which features her quotes about motherhood. The quotes are also supported by an audio recording of the interview which The Times has released to the BBC.

Theresa May has not responded directly to what The Times quotes Leadsom as saying, but this morning she invited her Conservative leadership rival to sign what she called "my clean campaign pledge."

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