Conservatives Line Up To Launch Bids To Replace Boris Johnson

Photo credit: Reuters

Who will be the next Prime Minister of the United Kingdom? That’s the big question across the pond in Britain. 

Conservative leaders have launched their bids to replace Boris Johnson as the country’s next prime minister. So far, 11 candidates have announced they are bidding to become the leader of the Conservative Party and the next Prime Minister.

The nominations close today for the Conservative leadership. 

Ex-finance minister Rishi Sunak and two others began their campaigns today, battling for their party’s support. 

The Conservative, or Tory, Party is deeply split over who should succeed Johnson. The race to Downing Street comes after Johnson was forced to resign after support went down the drain from him, in a rebellion over a laundry list of scandals. 

Sunak’s surprise resignation helped provoke the final rebellion that put the nail in Johnson’s coffin last week. Sunak was one of the first of the big Tory ministers to resign and did so last Tuesday evening on Twitter. It sparked a mass resignation over the next few days. 

The former finance minister will now try to convince the Tories that he is the “serious” candidate in a race that is being fought largely on the right-wing of the Conservative party. Other Tory big wigs throwing their name into the race are more staunchly right-wing, making Sunak one of the most moderate candidates. 

Massive splits have been shown in the Tories with certain leaders backing others in their runs for the Tory leadership. 

Currently, only four candidates have already got the 20 public endorsements they need to be officially nominated and run in the first-round ballot on Wednesday. Sunak is one. Penny Mordaunt, Liz Truss, and Tom Tudendhat are the other three. Coming in quite close is Keri Badenoch. 

According to the latest polls, Sunak is currently the Conservative members’ preferred option to take over the reins from Johnson. He would at the moment beat out Truss or Mordaunt on final members’ ballots. 

The 1922 Committee of Conservative members of parliament agreed yesterday upon the rules for the leadership contest, saying that the field will soon be chiseled down into the final two, who will be presented to the party by July 21. 

The winner will be announced on September 5. 

The race for Prime Minister is expected to only heat up from here, and the candidates will have to navigate an increasingly bitter leadership race. Hostile briefings from their competitors are already expected.

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