Penny Mordaunt’s bid to become prime minister got off to an embarrassing start after her campaign team were forced to hastily re-edit her launch video.
The three-minute broadcast announcing her intention to stand in the Tory leadership race was posted on Twitter at 9.30am this morning.
But it quickly became clear that it contained a number of mistakes.
They included clips of sports personalities apparently without their permission – including former paralympic gold medal-winning runner Oscar Pistorius, who is currently in prison for murdering his girlfriend.
One of the athletes featured, Jonnie Peacock, who won gold for Britain at 2012 paralympics, tweeted Mordaunt directly asking to be removed from the video, adding: “Anything but blue please.”
The video also featured footage of an easily-identifiable police officer.
Because the police are supposed to be politically neutral, such images are banned from political campaign material.
It also featured Dame Sarah Gilbert, the scientist credited with leading the team which created the Oxford vaccine against Covid-19.
However, five hours after the original video was posted on Twitter, a different version was put up with the sports personalities, police officer and Dame Sarah all removed.
Bizarrely, however, it took another two hours before the first version was finally deleted.
Mordaunt’s team has been asked to comment.
The embarrassing mix-up is a blow to Mordaunt as she seeks to be only the UK’s third female prime minister.
Elsewhere in the video, the Portsmouth North MP, who is also a member of the Royal Navy Reserve, said: “Our leadership has to change. It needs to become a little less about the leader and a lot more about the ship.
“I’m Penny Mordaunt and I’m ready to serve as the next leader of the Conservative Party.”