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by Louise Wilson
24 October 2022
Rishi Sunak to become Prime Minister after winning Tory leadership race

Rishi Sunak received the backing of over 180 MPs

Rishi Sunak to become Prime Minister after winning Tory leadership race

Rishi Sunak will become the next Prime Minister after becoming the new leader of the Conservative party.

Speaking on Monday afternoon, the former chancellor said he would "work day in, day out to deliver for the British people".

Saying he was "humbled and honoured" to have received the backing of his parliamentary colleagues, he added: "There is no doubt we face a profound economic challenge. We now need stability and unity, and I will make it my utmost priority to bring our party and our country together.”

He was the only candidate to have achieved the threshold of having more than 100 supporting colleagues.

Rival Penny Mordaunt conceded just moments before the 2pm deadline.

Chair of the 1922 committee Sir Graham Brady made the announcement to MPs.

He said: “I can confirm that we have received one valid nomination. Rishi Sunak is therefore elected as leader of the Conservative party.”

Sunak addressed MPs shortly afterwards and he will formally take office as Prime Minister later this week.

He takes over from Liz Truss, who resigned last week, to whom he lost during the leadership contest over the summer.

After conceding, Mordaunt said Sunak had her “full support”.

She said: “Despite the compressed timetable for the leadership contest it is clear that colleagues feel we need certainty today. They have taken this decision in good faith and for the good of the country.”

Scottish Tory leader Douglas Ross has congratulated Sunak.

He said: "Our country – like others around the world – faces tough economic challenges.

"Against that backdrop, it’s important that we have someone at the helm with a proven track record in running the nation’s finances, who can provide economic stability and reassurance to the markets... As he showed during his time as Chancellor – not least in safeguarding one in three Scottish jobs during the pandemic through the furlough scheme – Rishi Sunak is uniquely well equipped for that task.”

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon also offered her congratulations. She added she would “do my best to build a constructive working relationship with him in the interests of those we serve”.

But she also said: “As for the politics, I’d suggest one immediate decision he should take and one he certainly should not.

“He should call an early general election. And he should not – must not – unleash another round of austerity. Our public services will not withstand that.”

Labour and the Lib Dems are also calling for an election.

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