Sunak wins Conservative Party leadership contest days after the dramatic resignation of Liz Truss as prime minister.
Rishi Sunak will become the United Kingdom’s new prime minister after winning the ruling Conservative Party’s leadership contest triggered by the dramatic resignation of Liz Truss last week.
Sunak’s win on Monday came days after Truss’s resignation following her disastrous tax cuts plans and policy U-turns plunged the markets into chaos. The unprecedented economic crisis drew a rare intervention from the Bank of England.
Sunak’s only challenger, Penny Mordaunt, leader of the House of Commons and former defence minister, was reportedly backed by 30 MPs compared with nearly 150 supporting Sunak.
Sunak and Mordaunt had lost to Truss in an earlier race to appoint a new leader after then-Prime Minister Boris Johnson was forced to announce his resignation in July following a wave of scandals linked to parties entertained during the coronavirus lockdown.
While there were rumours over a Johnson’s comeback over the weekend, he pulled out of the contest on Sunday.
He said late on Sunday that he had secured the backing of 102 legislators and could have been “back in Downing Street”, but that he had failed to persuade either Sunak or the other contender, Mordaunt, to come together “in the national interest”.
“I believe I have much to offer but I am afraid that this is simply not the right time,” Johnson said.
More to follow.