The new Conservative Party leader may be known in early September, nine candidates have already been declared. According to the British media, Boris Johnson, furious at being “betrayed”, intends to weigh on the ballot.

Boris Johnson’s announced resignation whets appetites. After the British Prime Minister’s capitulation on Thursday in the face of unprecedented uprising within his own camp, weary of his lies and scandals, those who aspire to take his post on Downing Street after the summer launch themselves officially one after the other. A sign that the battle promises to be open, or at least it is perceived as such, the casting for the leadership of the Conservative Party is already swollen. Nine candidates were declared on Sunday afternoon. Meanwhile, probably in the next few hours, the entry into the race of the Foreign Minister, Liz Truss, whose intentions do not seem to be in doubt.

The head of British diplomacy is by no means the only government heavyweight – current or recently in office – to run for the executive. Former ministers Rishi Sunak (Finance) and Sajid Javid (Health), whose unexpected resignations Tuesday night, just minutes away from each other, sparked Boris Johnson’s fatal bleeding, have made official their candidacy. Like Sunak’s successor to finance and education minister Nadhim Zahawi, and former foreign and health minister Jeremy Hunt, beaten by Johnson in the 2019 election for left leadership.

Another member of the government to join the race: the Secretary of State for Foreign Trade, Penny Mordaunt. At 49, this 2016 Brexit campaign figure, who was the first woman to hold the post of Defense Minister, made her candidacy official on Sunday. She is a good speaker, a former Navy reservist, and she has seen her rise in popularity among the Conservatives. In a first clip of the campaign with patriotic undertones, posted on Twitter, she insisted on the need to “changeat the head of the country.

One notable exception to this avalanche of nominations from current or former members of the government team: Defense Secretary Ben Wallace, considered one of the big favorites to succeed “BoJo”, announced his decision not to run on Saturday. Explaining that he wanted to focus on his current mission and he “Guaranteeing the security of the country”.

Final vote before the start of the school year

In addition to this group of five well-known politicians, in which Rishi Sunak, elected MP in 2015 and the first Hindu to hold the position of Chancellor of the Exchequer, appears to have an advantage, four other competitors, whose chances of success appear much lower, have also joined the campaign. They are the Transport Minister, Grant Shapps, the Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee, Tom Tugendhat, the far-right Attorney General Suella Braverman and the former Secretary of State for Equality Kemi Badenoch.

In total, the Conservative Party authorities anticipate around 15 nominations, an influx that portends an increase in the thresholds in terms of sponsorship or number of votes in the first part of the process. “[Le parti] could very quickly set a fairly high level on how much support in Parliament each candidate should get “, Bronwen Maddox, director of the think tank Institute for Government, told Times Radio.

Questioned on Sunday on LBC radio, the treasurer of the 1922 committee, in charge of the internal organization of the party and whose leaders will meet on Monday, said “confident” that the two finalists are known within ten days, before the summer parliamentary truce which begins on 22 July. According to the scenario that seems to be emerging in the British press, the final vote of the members of the Conservative Party – 160,000 voters in the last internal elections of 2019 – would therefore take place by the beginning of September. It is only once the new party leader has been elected that Boris Johnson intends to leave Downing Street, a period deemed too long by the Labor opposition and some conservatives.

“Unfair bastard”

Crossed by political divergences, particularly in fiscal matters, thorny in the current context of the cost-of-living crisis and the explosion of inflation, at the highest for 40 years in the United Kingdom (over 9%), the campaign of the Tories it could also be marked by low blows, revelations, or a settling of scores. Including from Boris Johnson that, according to the British media, he is not taking away what he considers a “betrayal” on his own side.

Rishi Sunak, who would not have informed Johnson of his surprise resignation on Tuesday, appears to be the main target of the future former prime minister. In the columns of Financial Times this weekend, an unnamed senior Downing Street official called the former finance minister a “unfair bastard”. “Rishi will get everything he deserves for leading the prosecution against the prime minister”, he also announced Johnson’s support within the cabinet.

Quoting a high-level government source, The Guardian described a Boris Johnson on Saturday night ‘so mad at the way he got expelled’after winning the 2019 election by a large margin, it would have been “now determined to take revenge on those he holds responsible and to influence events from the outside as much as possible.”

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