Sir Bernard Jenkin has said leadership contender Boris Johnson can make people “feel good” about being British again.
The Conservative MP told talkRADIO’s Julia Hartley-Brewer Mr Johnson has a “much broader vision” for the country beyond Brexit.
“I think this is why Boris is attracting so much support. He has this ability to create a feelgood vision for this country and make people feel good about this country again,” he said.
Mr Johnson has vowed to make Britain the “greatest place on Earth” if he becomes Prime Minister.
Sir Bernard said the former foreign minister is capable of promoting Britain instead of “talking ourselves down”.
“We’ve got so many great assets in this country. We’ve got four of the top ten universities in the world in this country,” he said.
“We’ve got fantastic science and technology. We’ve got the world’s global financial centre. We’ve got so much literature, art and music.”
Sir Bernard has acknowledged Mr Johnson’s latest pledge to boost police numbers by 20,000 within three years will “take time”, but must remain a priority.
“It does take time to build up, you can’t just click your fingers and get an extra 20,000 police officers, that’s certainly true,” he said.
“The reduction in policing was mainly by a slowdown in recruitment, not by just sacking police.” he said.”
He added: “There’s some headroom in the budget. This is obviously one of the priorities that people want more money spent on and we must deliver it.”