Rishi Sunak: Economist outlines 'positives' of his fiscal policy
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Rishi Sunak will be the UK’s next Prime Minister – just 49 days after Tory members rejected his economic plans. The former Chancellor was picked to lead the party in what is being dubbed a “coronation” after no other candidate hit the required threshold to put the matter to a formal vote.
Mr Sunak is expected to now move into No10 as soon as tomorrow.
The King is ready to meet both the outgoing and incoming Tory leaders at the earlier opportunity to oversee a swift transition of leadership.
MPs wishing to take over from Ms Truss were required to have the backing of at least 100 Conservative MPs to formally enter the contest.
Penny Mordaunt, the only other MP to formally announce she was running for leader, had the public backing of just 30 of her colleagues.
She was forced to pull out of the contest just minutes before the result was announced.
Ms Mordaunt said: “This decision is an historic one and shows, once again, the diversity and talent of our party. Rishi has my full support.
“I am proud of the campaign we ran and grateful to all those, across all sides of our party, who gave me their backing.
“We all owe it to the country, to each other and to Rishi to unite and work together for the good of the nation. There is much work to be done.”
Meanwhile, Boris Johnson announced last night he would not be putting his name forward because “you can’t govern effectively unless you have a united party in Parliament”.
Although the ex-Prime Minister said he had the support of 102 MPs, only about half of them had gone public.
Mr Sunak had won over the support of a number of heavyweights within the party and current Cabinet ministers.
Home Secretary Grant Shapps, Chancellor Jeremy Hunt, and former ministers Michael Gove and Priti Patel all backed his plans for Britain.
Ms Patel said he had the “best chance of succeeding” when faced with the “enormous challenges upon us”.
Mr Shapps added that the Richmond MP was committed to delivering the party’s 2019 election promises.
“There’s a five-year programme, and we will be delivering that manifesto,” he said.
Mr Sunak’s victory comes after he was rejected by Conservative members last month.
The former Chancellor failed to win over the support of the party’s grassroots in five weeks of hustings across the country.
Some Tory MPs have expressed anger at a new leader of the party being picked without members being given a vote this time around.
Party grandee Sir John Redwood said: “As some Conservative MPs undermined the members’ choice of PM, members should be offered a choice of candidate this week with a ballot.”
Workington representative Mark Jenkinson added: “It often seems that for their membership fee, all Conservatives members get is further demands on their time and wallets. Every few years they may get to choose their candidate.
“CCHQ have done a great job of organising an online ballot in record time. Members must choose.”
He added the party appoints a new leader without consulting members “at our peril”.
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