Who Will Take Over From Theresa May? Runners And Riders For The Tory Leadership
28 March 2019, 14:31 | Updated: 28 March 2019, 20:31
Theresa May says she will step down as leader of the Conservative party if MPs back her deal, but who will take over? We’ve been looking at the runners and riders.
In a speech to backbencher MPs on Wednesday, the Prime Minister said: "I am prepared to leave this job earlier than I intended in order to do what is right for our country and our party."
A poll conducted earlier this month by the grassroots website Conservative Home put Boris Johnson favourite to succeed Mrs May.
The former Foreign Secretary came ahead of fellow Brexiteers Dominic Raab and Michael Gove.
Current Home Secretary Sajid Javid and Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt are also in the running.
Who are the favourites to succeed Theresa May as Conservative leader?
Name: Boris Johnson
About: The former Foreign Secretary resigned his government role to oppose the PM’s Brexit deal. He has appeal amongst Conservative members, but is not as popular amongst MPs. After Mrs May announced she would step down, Mr Johnson switched to backing the deal.
Name: Michael Gove
About: The Environment Secretary recently became bookies’ favourite after claims he was to be installed as caretaker PM. He was a leading Brexit campaigner in the 2016 referendum and supports the Withdrawal Agreement.
Name: Dominic Raab
About: Mr Raab was the second Brexit Secretary to resign from the government and a vocal critic of the deal. Despite Mrs May’s pledge to stand down, he is still opposing the agreement, calling for a “legally binding exit from the backstop”.
Name: Jeremy Hunt
About: The former Health Secretary turned Foreign Secretary was a Remain supporter but says he has since changed his mind. In 2017, he told LBC the “arrogance” of the EU during the negotiations had made him switch sides.
Name: Sajid Javid
About: The Home Secretary is the fourth favourite amongst Conservative members, according to the most recent poll. Despite campaigning for Remain, his support for Brexit since has seen his ranking improve.
Name: Matt Hancock
Position: Health Secretary & MP West Suffolk.
Name: Andrea Leadsom
Position: Leader of the House of Commons, runner-up in last Tory leadership election & MP for South Northamptonshire.
Name: Amber Rudd
Position: Work and Pensions Secretary & MP for Hastings and Rye.
Name: David Lidington
Position: Defacto deputy Prime Minister and MP for Aylesbury.
Name: Jacob Rees-Mogg (has since ruled himself out)
Position: MP for North East Somerset & chairman of the European Research Group.