Great Britain: Truss successor: A lot of support for ex-minister Sunak

In the race to succeed outgoing Prime Minister Liz Truss, a favorite is emerging within the Tory group.

Great Britain: Truss successor: A lot of support for ex-minister Sunak

In the race to succeed outgoing Prime Minister Liz Truss, a favorite is emerging within the Tory group. According to the British media, ex-Finance Minister Rishi Sunak is the first possible candidate who can rally the necessary number of supporters among Conservative MPs. To run for the top job, candidates need the backing of at least 100 MPs. Nominations can be received until Monday afternoon.

"These are difficult times and we need leadership up to the task, so I support Rishi," said former Vice Premier Dominic Raab. Sunak has a clear plan to restore financial stability to the UK and regain confidence in the UK economy after the financial market chaos.

Sunak is credited by many for repeatedly warning of the very chaos that Truss unleashed on the financial markets with her economic policies during the election campaign against her a few weeks ago. Sunak was already the group's favorite in the House of Commons when he ran to succeed ex-Prime Minister Boris Johnson, but was defeated by Truss in the party's grassroots vote.

Johnson returns to London from vacation

Truss resigned on Thursday as the shortest-ever prime minister after her economic policies proved unsustainable and she lost two key cabinet mates. The party has announced an accelerated procedure so that it should be clear by next Friday at the latest who will be at the head of the British government in the future.

The most dangerous rival for Sunak is the scandal-plagued Boris Johnson, who left office just a few weeks ago. Johnson returned to London with his family from a shortened vacation in the Caribbean on Saturday and is said to be raring to go as a candidate, according to allies. A statement from himself was eagerly awaited at the weekend. On Saturday afternoon, a source close to Johnson said he had the 100 supporters needed. Up until then, however, far fewer had known about him publicly.

Public supporters of the Bring Back Boris project include some cabinet members such as Brexit hardliner Jacob Rees-Mogg. She calculated that only Johnson, as a gifted campaigner, could free the conservative party from the quagmire of catastrophic poll numbers.

However, the numerous scandals hang after Johnson - and could even be responsible for his political k.o. concerns: An investigation is currently underway into whether Johnson lied to Parliament in the "Partygate" affair. If the relevant committee concludes that this was the case, Johnson could even lose his seat as MP. Even old allies like the "Telegraph" editor Charles Moore wrote in a comment that now is "not the time for Boris". It's too early for a comeback. Now Rishi Sunak has to ensure order. Ex-Brexit Minister and former Johnson confidante David Frost also joined the Sunak camp.

TV presenter Andrew Neil wrote in the Daily Mail that it was time the Tories put the interests of the country before those of their party. "Meanwhile, the idea that Johnson is viewed by some Tories as a serious alternative just goes to show how very large sections of the party have lost their senses."

The opposition wants new elections

Third in the race is Minister Penny Mordaunt (49), responsible for parliamentary issues, who officially announced her candidacy on Friday. According to British media counts, Mordaunt is far behind Sunak and Johnson in terms of public support.

If more than two candidates receive the necessary support from 100 MPs, the circle should be reduced when voting in the parliamentary group. If there are two finalists after that, the party base can vote in an online vote during the week. Otherwise, the decision could be made earlier.

The opposition is now vehemently demanding an immediate new election, but the ruling Tory party has the upper hand and can relatively freely determine the date for the next election - by early 2025 at the latest. A new election is therefore considered unlikely for the time being.

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