Rishi Sunak at the gates of Downing Street after Boris Johnson quits

Boris Johnson has missed his “comeback”. Chased this summer from Downing Street by scandals, the former Conservative Prime Minister believed that he could return there through the front door at the end of October, replacing Liz Truss, who resigned after only 44 days of a catastrophic term. . But the Johnsonian “circus” lasted only the time of a weekend, from his descent from the plane at Gatwick, Saturday, October 22 (back hastily from vacation in Dominica, in the Caribbean, with wife and children ), the next evening Sunday, October 23, where after hours spent on the phone trying to convince Tory MPs to support him, the troublemaker of British politics found that his popularity was no longer necessarily what he believed.

“I think I am well placed to lead the Conservatives to victory in 2024 [aux prochaines élections générales] and tonight I can confirm that I got 102 supports [d’élus conservateurs] », said Sunday evening the ex-leader, who was not even officially a candidate – he had until Monday, October 24, early afternoon to declare himself. But “Over the past few days, I’ve sadly come to the conclusion that it just wouldn’t be the right thing to do. [vu] that it is impossible to govern effectively without the support of a united party in Parliament”, Mr Johnson added. Is the MP for Uxbridge (west London) only telling the truth: did he really have the 100 signatures of elected officials required to enter the race for Downing Street?

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His opponents and the media doubted it all weekend. Sunday evening, the BBC counted only 57 public supports for Mr. Johnson. His main competitor, Rishi Sunak, continued to garner support, a sign of an obvious dynamic. The former Chancellor of the Exchequer of Mr. Johnson could boast of 147 public support at the end of the weekend, or already 40% of the college of Conservative deputies. If Penny Mordaunt, the third elected to claim the supreme post, withdraws from the race – on Sunday, only twenty-four deputies supported her -, Mr. Sunak, 42, could be appointed prime minister on Monday evening.

The doubt lasted all weekend

Countryside “Bring back Boris [Ramenez-nous Boris] » was however rather well engaged with some strong support and encouragement in recent days – including that of Ben Wallace, the highly respected Minister of Defense, who declared on Friday October 21 “lean” for Mr. Johnson. The hard core of the “pro-Boris” – Nadine Dorries, his ex-minister of culture, Jacob Rees-Mogg, his ex-minister of Brexit -, also hoped to capture the voices of the right of the party.

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