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Sunak and Truss to face off in the final round of Tory leadership vote

Rishi Sunak, until July 5 Chancellor of the Exchequer, received 137 votes. Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs Liz Truss received 113 votes. Penny Mordaunt, Minister of State for Trade Policy, a junior position in the cabinet, who came in second in the previous round now received 105 votes, eliminating her from the race.

Rishi Sunak has released a video thanking his colleagues for putting him into the final vote. He also said that he’s now the “only candidate” who can beat Labour leader, Sir Keir Starmer, at the next election. This sentiment is also shared by Sunak’s supporters.

Grateful that my colleagues have put their trust in me today.

I will work night and day to deliver our message around the country.

Join the team at https://t.co/3cXn1rFhca pic.twitter.com/ro612xDAcL

— Ready For Rishi (@RishiSunak) July 20, 2022

The next parliamentary elections are expected to be held in January 2025, unless snap elections are called.

However, Sunak may not get the chance to lead the Tories against Labour. The hawkish Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Liz Truss poses a major challenge. In a survey of 725 Conservative Party members carried out before the July 20 vote, 54 per cent of Tories said they would vote for Truss, and 35 percent would vote for Sunak. 11 per cent remained undecided. If Sunak were to face Ms Mordaunt, he would also lose, receiving 37 percent of the vote to Mordaunt’s 51 percent.

“I am excited to now take to the country to make the case to the Conservative Party about my bold new economic plan that will cut taxes, grow our economy and unleash the potential of everyone in our United Kingdom,” said Liz Truss.

“Thank you for putting your trust in me,” Secretary Truss said, thanking her supporters for the votes they cast for her. “As Prime Minister, I would hit the ground running from day one, unite the party and govern in line with Conservative values.”

Penny Mordaunt, who was knocked out of the race following the Wednesday vote, congratulated Sunak and Truss, saying: “I pay tribute to anyone who puts themselves forward for such a demanding role.”

Ms Mordaunt also stressed the need for unity in the party:

“We must all now work together to unify our party and focus on the job that needs to be done,” and urged other Tories to keep an eye on the ball. “Our mission is not only to deliver on what we promised but to win the fight against Labour at the next general election. I hope to play my part in both.”

The Conservative Party will proceed to the final round of electing the new top Tory with a postal ballot which will begin on July 22. All 160,000 members of the Conservative Party are eligible to vote, and the results will be announced on September 5. In the meantime, a head-to-head debate on the BBC will be held on July 25, Monday.

Hasta la vista, baby!

Prior to the vote, Boris Johnson, who resigned from party leadership but said he will remain the Prime Minister until the new Tory leader is elected, spoke in the House of Commons in his last appearance during Prime Minister’s Questions.

Mr Johnson remains convinced, that his cabinet’s policies were good for the country, leading it through Brexit, and Covid:

“We’ve helped, I’ve helped, get this country through a pandemic and help save another country from barbarism. And frankly, that’s enough to be going on. Mission largely accomplished,” Johnson said.

“I want to thank everybody here and hasta la vista, baby,” Johnson concluded his speech, gathering a long round of roaring applause from MPs on the Tory side of the floor.


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