Rishi Sunak has become the UK’s next prime minister after his Conservative leadership rival Penny Mordaunt dropped out of the two-horse race, minutes before today’s deadline.
The former chancellor emerged unopposed to succeed Liz Truss and will take his position at Downing Street, just seven weeks after losing the last race.
Sunak becomes the UK’s first Hindu leader, the first of Asian heritage and, at 42, the youngest PM for more than two centuries. All this after Ms Truss resigned last week, making her 44 days in office the shortest ever term for a PM in UK history.
Sunak had gained the support of well over half of all Tory MPs. Ms Mordaunt, meanwhile, bowed out of the leadership contest at the eleventh hour after failing to accumulate the 100 nominations required by the 2pm cut-off deadline.
Her decision came after Boris Johnson also withdrew from the contest on Sunday evening, even though he insisted he had the backing of at least 100 MPs – which would have given him a ticket in today’s ballot.
Labour have reiterated their call for a general election, as have the Scottish National Party and the Liberal Democrats