Tuesday, July 12, 2022

Suddenly it looks much less likely that Rishi Sunak is the next Prime Minister

I'm completely stunned by the outcome of the latest ConHome survey on Tory members' leadership preferences - which has to be taken seriously, because Tory members will ultimately select the new leader from a shortlist of two handed to them by MPs.  It doesn't matter how decisively Rishi Sunak tops the MPs' ballots - if the second placed candidate is more popular with the members, Sunak will quite simply not become Prime Minister, and it now looks like that scenario may very well play out.

From the start I've been baffled by Penny Mordaunt's status as either favourite or one of the favourites, but the survey suggests her chances have not been remotely over-hyped.  Even more remarkably, in a close second place is the obscure Kemi Badenoch, while Sunak trails in a fairly distant third.

ConservativeHome leadership survey of Conservative members:

Penny Mordaunt 20%
Kemi Badenoch 19%
Rishi Sunak 12%
Suella Braverman 11%
Liz Truss 11%
Tom Tugendhat 7%
Jeremy Hunt 4%
Nadhim Sahawi 4%
Sajid Javid 3%
Grant Shapps 2%
Priti Patel 2%

I'm half-tempted to blame myself for being surprised, because I haven't exactly been keeping a close eye on the ongoing Tory beauty contest in recent years.  As I said on Twitter the other day, I even had to look up Mordaunt on YouTube to remind myself of what her voice sounds like.  But the reality is that none of this makes much sense, no matter how closely you've been paying attention.  Neither Mordaunt not Badenoch are Cabinet ministers - Mordaunt is a Minister of State, which is the rung below Cabinet level, and Badenoch has just become a former Minister of State.  It's unprecedented in modern times for anyone to jump straight from being a Minister of State to being Prime Minister - although that may be slightly misleading in the case of Mordaunt, who was a Cabinet member in the past.  (Boris Johnson technically went straight from the backbenches to Number 10, because he had resigned as Foreign Secretary a year earlier, so that's perhaps comparable to Mordaunt's situation.)

ConHome's write-up implies that Sunak can now expect to lose if he faces Mordaunt or Badenoch in the run-off.  I think that's right if it's Mordaunt, because there's nothing that can be expected to shift members' views radically, but if it's Badenoch, I can't help wondering if the members will get cold feet about electing someone who is far less experienced than Sunak (even though she's the same age as him).

The survey is also useful for separating out the credible candidates from the also-rans.  It looks as if Hunt, Javid, Shapps, Patel and Sahawi might as well forget the whole thing, while incredibly the awful Truss and Braverman both have a realistic chance.  Tugendhat is, at best, on the fringes of contention.

*  *  *

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  1. Doesn't matter which particular Brit is elected : different face, same enemy.

  2. As we ken it will be the tory MPs in Cessminster who'll decide the two finalists so they will probably ignore members' preferences as they now stand and choose... well, don't be surprised if it's Shapps and Patel.

  3. What a bloody nightmare. When Jeremy Hunt looks the least vile but has about nil chance with the grotesque electorate of tory MP's and party members. Perhaps we should opt out of the UK ?

  4. A new PM (Prime Minister). More like a new PG (Prison Governor) as far as Scotland is concerned. F**k the lot of them.

    Scotland is subjugated, subservient and humiliated on a daily basis by these people and Sturgeon plays by their rules and just loves her 4 nations summits etc etc as any good devolutionalist would do.

    F**k Sturgeon, Blackford and all her disgusting gang of phonies.

  5. Sunshine on CrieffJuly 12, 2022 at 2:39 PM

    Was it a proper survey of Conservative party members - that is, a representative sample - or just an online poll amongst readers of Conservative Home? One thing that may affect Mordaunt when it comes to a membship ballot is her enthusiasm for gender self-id, something that the Tories have moved away from once the implications became more understood.

    1. I believe it was a self-selecting online poll.

      Tory MPs have different motivations than the membership at large. MPs want to remain employed, which means trying to pick the fellow MP that will help most of them keep their seats. Just because, eg, Kemi Badenoch is ranked second in this poll by party members does not mean she will get to the final two.

    2. It's not as simple as that, though. ConHome surveys are taken very seriously because they've proved to be a good guide in the past. See how the betting shifted last night when this survey came out, for example. So some MPs may now be motivated to switch to Badenoch because they'll see they might be backing a winner if they can get her into the final two.

  6. Sturgeon has been asking for a mandate (and getting it) to hold a referendum since 2016. So she has been asking voters to vote for something she thought might be outside the competence of the Scottish Parliament for 6 years. She also made no attempt until now to clarify if it was unlawful (in English or Scots law) and indeed did her very best along with her Lord Advocate Wolfe to prevent the question being answered. Sturgeon is a charlatan using independence to get votes and playing for time to remain in power. Her new plan is just her latest con to stay in power longer so that she can fulfill the Irish Skiers wet dream of Scotland covered in unisex toilets. That will be her legacy. Scotland needs a REAL independence leader.

    1. I see our Dear Leader is busy tweeting the list of books she intends to read during the recess. No campaigning for Indy to be done then? What a charlatan! She and her Vichy government need swept out of office before any vote for Indy takes place.

      Meanwhile Alba's MPs are thrown out of PMQs for heckling Bozo while Blackford et al sit on their well-upholstered backsides saying and doing nothing as usual.

      Still the really important work of providing perverts with access to women's spaces continues apace. I imagine Skier - oops sorry, 'Mme Skier' - has a new frock laid out ready for the big day.

    2. Sturgeon's SNP is like a book club. The MPs sit around drinking, eating and talking. I now have two SNP MPs for the price of one as Oswald has doubled in size since being elected in 2019. If that comment offends the Hokey Cokey wokey lot in AIM then they can f**k right off. It's supposed to be a drive for Scottish independence not a book club or a women's institute meeting.

  7. Poor old Phillippa Whitford getting a good dose of BBC Britnat lies this lunchtime from the completely biased Jo Coburn and a classic old right wing Tory duffer who trotted out you've had your referendum and your not getting another one. Oliver Twist had a better chance of getting seconds. Scotland not in a union but in a prison where if it was anywhere else in the world Scotlands official status would be a colony.

    The WGD numpties going nuts about the BBC again but will they or Whitford think why does our independence leader think the BBC is a key and valued institution. Sturgeon thinks that because it is a key and valued institution for the Britnats to keep Scotland in her majesty's prison called the UK and she is a Britnat.

    1. Aye ye’ve hit the nail oan the heed. Any nationalist party worthy of the name would have withdrawn all cooperation with the BBC following the Question Time / Billy Mitchell scandal of 2019.
      Sturgeon did hee-haw. The BBC is British state propaganda apparatus and by extension Sturgeon is a British state asset.

  8. Apologises to Angus Robertson and his colleagues in AIM for my posts above if they do not adhere to your be nice to Britnats dictums.

    Ha ha only joking - you lot can f**k off as well. Westminster has been treating Scotland like a colony for hundreds of years and Angus and all the rest of the diddies in AIM want us to talk nicely about them. Unbelievable.

    A thief is a thief and Angus does not want us to upset the thief by calling them thieves.
    An abuser is an abuser and Angus does not want us to upset the abuser by calling them abusers.
    A liar is a liar and Angus does not want us to upset the Britnat liars by calling them liars.
    A colonialist is a colonialist and Angus does not want us to upset the colonialists in Westminster by calling them exactly what they have been trained to do for centuries.

    Angus should look to improve his own behaviour first and then f**k off.

  9. You nat sis still around young James.

  10. Glesga Working ClassJuly 12, 2022 at 11:38 PM

    You still around young James with your EU liberal democracy and the EU running Scotland.

  11. The bile on WGD reaches high levels again as they think Alba MPs should just settle down on Westminster benches and be good little devolutionalists like the pathetic SNP MPs.

    Westminster needs MORE disruption like this but WGD numpties are just pathetic do nothing people like their MPs. Subservient SNP and subservient WGD numpties will never deliver independence.