As nominations are now open, Rishi Sunak crosses the barrier for the U.K. PM campaign.

Rishi Sunak

Rishi Sunak, a former UK chancellor, is one of the early candidates to get the 20 Conservative Party MPs he needs to run for leader and become the next British PM on September 5.

As nominations start, the British Indian MP for Richmond in Yorkshire, who is 42 years old, keeps his lead. Trade Minister Penny Mordaunt, the new Chancellor Nadhim Zahawi, and Tory backbencher Tom Tugendhat are also in the running to reach 20 MPs.

Attorney General Suella Braverman, Foreign Secretary Liz Truss, Nigerian-born Kemi Badenoch, former Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps, Foreign Office Minister Rehman Chishti, and former Health Secretary Sajid Javid are also likely to run.

The Home Secretary, Priti Patel, who is from India, is still thinking about running, and the hardline Brexit wing of the Conservative Party might back her if she runs late.

Monday, the 1922 Committee confirmed that the new Prime Minister will be chosen on September 5 and hold their first PMQs on September 7. On Wednesday, each candidate will need the votes of 30 Tory MPs, or just under 10 percent, to move on to the next round.

On Thursday’s second ballot, the least popular candidates will be voted out. If the race between the last two candidates doesn’t end this week, there will be more ballots next week.

The deadline for getting down to just two candidates is July 21, when 1922 Committee Chair Sir Graham Brady will also try to make sure that both finalists will be put to a vote by the party members.

Theresa May was elected in 2019 without any opposition from MPs or the Tory base because Andrea Leadsom dropped out at the last minute. The party doesn’t want another election to turn out the same way.

When there are only two candidates left, they will tour the U.K. to campaign for the expected 200,000 Tory party members who will then vote by mail. The winner will become the new leader of the Tories and Prime Minister of the UK.

Penny Mordaunt is in charge of a vote of Tory members on the Conservative Home website. This shows that the party’s base wants change. The second favourite is Kemi Badenoch, and Sunak and Braverman are the next two.

Most Johnson supporters are likely to vote for Truss, who is running to keep things the same. Many of the 358 MPs in the Conservative Party haven’t said who they are voting for yet. As the week goes on, the remaining candidates on the shortlist will fight for the votes of people who supported candidates who didn’t win.

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