Boris Johnson has resigned from the Conservative party. This paves the way for former finance minister Rishi Sunak to succeed Liz Truss as prime minister.
Johnson, who stepped down as prime minister this summer after a string of scandals, said in a statement he was convinced he had a good chance of returning to Downing Street next week. He also said he could give the Conservative Party a victory in the parliamentary elections in 2024.
Despite this, he does not run for the post of party leader, which automatically entails the Premiership.
“In the past few days, I have unfortunately had to conclude that that would not be the right step. You cannot effectively govern without a united party in Parliament.”
Johnson says he has tried unsuccessfully in recent days to align with the other two candidates, Sunak and Penny Mordaunt. “I hoped that we could reach an agreement in the national interest, but unfortunately we did not succeed.”
“I think I have a lot to offer, but I’m afraid this is just not the right time.”
The Conservative Party will vote today on Truss ‘ succession. Now that Johnson is getting out of the race, Sunak (42) seems to be the candidate with the best papers.
Unlike Mordaunt, he is assured of the hundred expressions of support from members of Parliament necessary to be allowed to participate. According to the BBC, he has almost 150, spacious enough to be able to throw a throw at the leadership. If there is no other candidate, Sunak will be named party leader this afternoon, automatically becoming prime minister.