The prime minister should stay in his post even in the case of a Brexit, Michael Howard has said.
The former leader of the Conservative party, who is backing a vote to leave the EU, said the last thing the Tories would need in the event of a Brexit is a leadership contest and the party must stay united.
Speaking to ITV News Political Editor Robert Peston, Lord Howard said: "On June 24th, what ever the result of the referendum, the Conservative Party has got to come together again because it has to provide the government of the country for at least the next four years, quite possibly longer than that given the state of the Labour party, and so I hope the prime minister will stay in office, I think he should stay in office and I certainly hope Michael Gove will stay in the cabinet."
Lord Howard, 74, added: "If we vote to leave there would be a negotiation to take place and the last thing the country would need is to be distracted by a Tory leadership campaign."
He also said he doesn't blame Cameron for his "total failure to achieve fundamental and far-reaching [EU] change" as he thinks "he tried".
Mr Howard added If EU sticks to its "present model...I don't think it will survive".