Exclusive Theresa May Shouldn't Face New Elections After Becoming British PM, Says Former Foreign Secretary Rifkind

The United Kingdom shouldn’t hold new elections after Theresa May is confirmed as prime minister, Britain’s former foreign secretary told Handelsblatt in an exclusive interview. Malcolm Rifkind, an experienced Tory politician who served under prime ministers Margaret Thatcher and John Major, said the Conservatives are the only party in a position to govern Britain after its vote to leave the European Union. Home Secretary Theresa May became Britain’s prime minister in-waiting on Monday after rival candidate Andrea Leadsom dropped out of the race. David Cameron had announced his resignation after Britain’s vote to leave the European Union on June 23, triggering a leadership battle within the Conservative Party. On Monday, with Ms. May’s path cleared, Mr. Cameron said he would formally step down from the post on Wednesday. Mr. Rifkind compared Ms. May to German Chancellor Angela Merkel: “They are both the daughters of churchmen, they both have a very serious manner, there’s not much humor, a slightness of touch, a get-on-with-the-job and they are respected for that.” “I was always very impressed by her seriousness, by her ability to understand the details as well as the generality and she’s a hard worker,” Mr. Rifkind said, describing Ms. May. The former foreign secretary also dismissed speculation that the British parliament could scuttle the Brexit: “We have had a referendum and the will of the electorate must be respected,” he said. Check back later for the full story in Handelsblatt Global Edition. Picture Source: DPA