UK: Rishi Sunak to Become Next PM

Rishi Sunak will become the UK's next Prime Minister, replacing Liz Truss who announced her resignation last Thursday. The former chancellor was elected unopposed, after former PM Boris Johnson and Penny Mordaunt pulled out of the race within the Conservative Party.

UK: Rishi Sunak to Become Next PM
Image credit: Reuters [via The Telegraph]

Facts

  • Rishi Sunak will become the UK's next Prime Minister, replacing Liz Truss who announced her resignation last Thursday. The former chancellor was elected unopposed, after former PM Boris Johnson and Penny Mordaunt pulled out of the race within the Conservative Party.
  • His election comes at a tumultuous time as Truss resigned over the economic fallout of her "mini-budget" after six weeks in office, and Johnson was forced out of office three months ago over a COVID scandal and links to disgraced MP Chris Pincher.
  • Speaking at the Conservative Party HQ, Sunak paid tribute to Truss for her leadership efforts, and said he was "humbled" and "honored" to serve as the new Tory leader, adding that the country faces a profound "economic" challenge, which can only be overcome with "stability and unity."
  • Sunak has reportedly ruled out an early general election to his Tory colleagues during a closed-door meeting, refusing calls from opposition parties led by the Labour Party. The next general election is due to take place in 2024.
  • On Tuesday, he will make a statement outside No 10 before traveling to Buckingham Palace, where King Charles III will host an "Audience" [a one-on-one meeting with The King] and the new Tory leader. Prior to that, Truss will chair a cabinet meeting and offer her resignation to the King.
  • Sunak is set to make history in Britain, becoming its first non-white prime minister and the first Hindu to take the top job. He will also be the youngest PM in more than 200 years.

Sources: Guardian, CNBC, Telegraph, BBC News, Independent, and New York Post.

Narratives

  • Right narrative, as provided by The Telegraph. The country is now in safe hands. Sunak has proved his capacity as Chancellor and will bring to the office of Prime Minister exactly what the UK needs: a moderate, competent, and cogent government. Tory MPs have made a wise decision by selecting a leader with political maturity, and the ability to learn and change. Sunak is the person to mend the economy and the reputation of the Conservative Party.
  • Left narrative, as provided by The New Statesman. Generations of Conservative MPs have set the UK economy up for failure and brought the British political system to its knees. Since the Brexit referendum divided the nation in 2016, a succession of incompetent leaders plunged Westminster into chaos to the cost of the British people. Yet again, the Tories have elected a leader behind closed doors and, if Sunak fails to fulfill his pledges, there will be no way of holding him accountable.

Predictions