The favorites in the race to become the next British Prime Minister; Next British Prime Minister; Rishi Sunak British Prime Minister; British Conservative Party

Former Foreign and Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt has confirmed he will run for Prime Minister again.


The race to replace Britain’s Boris Johnson as Tory leader and prime minister is on, with nine candidates already declared and other Tory MPs likely to join.

While several possible successors are considered favorites, there is no clear favorite – and these contests are notoriously volatile.

-Rishi Sunak-

Indian-born British Finance Minister Sunak resigned on Tuesday and said he was up three days later.

Long considered Johnson’s most likely successor, his prospects were dented earlier this year by questions about his private wealth and his family’s tax arrangements.

But a recent poll of Tory members who will eventually vote for their new leader put him ahead.

Sunak, 42, has a high profile on social media – launching his offer in a clever video posted on Twitter – and has been applauded for supporting the economy during the pandemic.

But its apparent reluctance to accept the immediate tax cuts promised by its rivals could hurt its prospects.

– Jeremy Hunt –

Former Foreign and Health Secretary Hunt, 55, lost to Johnson in 2019 but confirmed on Saturday he would run again.

A supporter of remaining in the European Union during the 2016 referendum, he revealed that Brexiteer Ester McVey would be his assistant in the event of victory.

Fluent in Japanese and lacking Johnson’s charisma, he also pledged to cut corporate taxes from 25% to 15%.

-Liz Truss-

Foreign Secretary Truss is generally expected to rise, but he hasn’t said so yet.

The 46-year-old is popular with Tory MPs for her outspokenness.

But it has also raised questions about her judgement, for example when in February she encouraged the British to fight in Ukraine.

Critics say his leadership posture is too overt.

When she headed the Department for International Trade, some MPs dubbed it the “Department for Instagramming Truss” because of her prolific output on the social media site.

-Sajid Javid-

Javid, who also resigned as health secretary on Tuesday and had previously resigned as finance minister in 2020, announced his candidacy on Saturday.

The 52-year-old son of a Pakistani immigrant bus driver was previously a high-profile banker.

Like Sunak, he also faces questions about his personal wealth and tax affairs, but tried to brush them off in media interviews on Sunday, promising a series of tax cuts.

-Nadhim Zahawi-

Newly appointed finance minister Zahawi has been praised for overseeing the rollout of Britain’s pandemic vaccines, before heading the education department.

The 55-year-old is a former refugee from Iraq who came to Britain as a child and spoke no English. Before entering politics, he co-founded the prominent polling firm YouGov.

But his private wealth also attracted attention, notably when he claimed parliamentary expenses to heat his stables.

His fledgling campaign was put in jeopardy on Sunday after newspapers reported he was being investigated by UK tax authorities, although he denied any wrongdoing.

-Tom Tugendhat-

The prominent backbench MP who chairs Parliament’s influential foreign affairs committee was the first to put forward his candidacy.

A former army officer who served in the Middle East, he is also a hawk on China and has criticized the government’s handling of the withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan.

The 49-year-old is touting himself as a ‘good start’ after Johnson’s turbulent three-year tenure.

-Penny Mordaunt-

Mordaunt, 49, the first woman to serve as Britain’s defense secretary and currently trade minister, was the latest to join the contest, announcing it in a video posted on social media on Sunday.

A staunch Brexit supporter and key figure in the 2016 ‘Leave’ campaign, she has been touted as a potential unity candidate who could gain support from warring factions of the Conservative Party.

-Suela Braverman-

Attorney General and arch-Brexiteer Braverman said his campaign in midweek media interviews.

The 42-year-old is popular within the party for her Euroscepticism.

She is one of 28 so-called ‘Spartan’ Tory MPs, who refused to back ex-Prime Minister Theresa May’s Brexit deal on each of the three occasions it was passed in parliament.

-Grant Shapps-

Transport Secretary Shapps emerged from the crowded field on Saturday, also promising tax cuts and a capable government.

The 53-year-old is seen as an effective communicator and campaigner, but seen as a long shot for the top job.

-Kemi Badenoch-

Former equality minister Badenoch, who resigned on Wednesday, has the lowest profile of the current suitors and is another unlikely winner.

The 42-year-old vowed to tell ‘the truth’, saying people were ‘wearied out with platitudes and hollow rhetoric’.

(Except for the title, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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