The Student Room Group

Next Conservative leader speculation thread

As Boris Johnson's situation continues to look semi-precarious, I thought we might as well start the debate about the succession.

The assumption during covid was that Rishi Sunak was the designated successor, then it became a Sunak v Truss duel, and now Sunak is struggling after his fine, while the Ukraine invasion has caused Ben Wallace's star to rise. Sajid Javid, Jeremy Hunt and Michael Gove are also all experienced cabinet ministers who have the potential to do well in a leadership contest.

Do you think there'll be a contest soon, who do you think is likely to succeed Boris Johnson, and who would you choose?
(edited 2 years ago)

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Reply 1
Since universal suffrage whenever the Tories have changed leader while in power (bar May) they have always gone for a current/former foreign sec or chancellor.

That suggests that Truss, Hunt, Javid and Sunak are favoured albeit as noted, Wallace is riding a wave within the party thanks to Ukraine.

All are awful. Sunak is the least conservative chancellor since Brown, Javid is monotone, Truss has accomplished nothin of note ever and Hunt is a liberal technocrat (admittedly the most talented politically).
Up until recently I'd have said Sunak. But recent events have suggested he's not particularly politically astute, so he's certainly not a shoo-in anymore. I think one of the reasons why Johnson is still in is because there is no clear replacement option.
I'm a cynic, but still expecting them to unveil Grace Mugabe or Anthony Scaramucci under the logic of shaking things up.
Sunak was immensely popular during the lockdown. When Johnson's leadership was in question I assumed Sunak would replace him, but the recent controversy with his wife and the cost of living crisis makes me think he won't be chosen. He has a bad image now, and it would be difficult shaking that off.

Patel seems to be universally disliked, even by the right wing media, and Javid is just... dull? I think Truss could have a chance if she didn't have an aura of incompetence and ridiculousness surrounding her (see the 'Cheese Speech').

Thinking about it, Michael Gove may be the next best bet for PM. He has been out of the spotlight for a while (relatively speaking) and people's past grievances with him over Brexit and his time as Education Secretary may have been forgotten. Hunt seems to have stepped down from mainstream politics so I can't really see him wanting to run again.
Sunak - a very solid choice that is well suited to modern British conservativism. He literally believes in giving everyone free lunches, was utterly unapologetic at handing over several billion to fraudsters, and likes hammering people with taxes. Enjoys a good photo shoot.

Truss - complete lightweight that is out of her depth but she excels at the superficial flag-waving superficial patriotism that conservatives absolutely love.

Both are good options if the Conservative Party wish to continue to meet my low expectations.
Not a fan of any of them.
Gove is probably the worst option, although Sunak and Hunt are not much more palatable.
Personally I'd choose Dominic Raab with Priti Patel as deputy.
Andrea Leadsom as foreign secretary, Rees-Mogg as home secretary and Liz Truss as education secretary.
Reply 7
Original post by londonmyst
Not a fan of any of them.
Gove is probably the worst option, although Sunak and Hunt are not much more palatable.
Personally I'd choose Dominic Raab with Priti Patel as deputy.
Andrea Leadsom as foreign secretary, Rees-Mogg as home secretary and Liz Truss as education secretary.

Out of interest, why do you think Gove would be worst. He'd be my number 1 pick personally. A Hunt-Gove ticket would be interesting.
Reply 8
I'd say Gove even though he resembles a pouting fish. Hunt perhaps too.
Original post by Rakas21
Out of interest, why do you think Gove would be worst. He'd be my number 1 pick personally.
A Hunt-Gove ticket would be interesting.

The title of an article written by a guardian journalist just about sums it up "Michael Gove is the political horror show that chills my soul".
Education, Secretary of State for Justice, Environment-Food & Rural Affairs, campaign manager for Boris in the 2016 leadership election. :argh:
Makes Stephen Byers, Jonathan Aitken and Neil Hamilton look like almost competent & reasonably behaved politicians by comparison.

If the only alternatives for PM were him, Jeremy Corbyn, Nicola Sturgeon and Rory Stewart- I'd have no idea where to cast my protest vote. :biggrin:
Original post by Smack
Up until recently I'd have said Sunak. But recent events have suggested he's not particularly politically astute, so he's certainly not a shoo-in anymore. I think one of the reasons why Johnson is still in is because there is no clear replacement option.

I think Sunak is still the best option tbh - he feels like a fresher face for the Tories (compared to Gove and Truss who seem to have lurked around for years). His performance in the Commons is very good and as we've seen for the many photoshoots and visits, he can be rather charismatic when talking with voters.

There's of course the baggage of his tax affairs and his arguably unconservative spending during the pandemic, but I can't think of many politicians who haven't suffered from damaging stories at some point in their career. The Tories need a fresher face to lead them and Sunak would do well with the right manifesto.
Think there might be more speculation now about who might come next...

You can also discuss the aftermath of the confidence vote and when Boris Johnson will go.
I’m not sure personally I’d like Hunt but I don’t think that’s likely Gove might be ok with his green credentials .I’d also like Dame Cheryl Gillan because she was at the last All Party Parliamentary Group for Muscular Dystrophy. Having a PM with knowledge of the disease would be a good thing for me (as I have DM1) but that’s not likely… maybe as Minister for Disabled People, Health and Work but still I don’t know.
Original post by jonathanemptage
I’d also like Dame Cheryl Gillan because she was at the last All Party Parliamentary Group for Muscular Dystrophy. Having a PM with knowledge of the disease would be a good thing for me (as I have DM1) but that’s not likely… maybe as Minister for Disabled People, Health and Work but still I don’t know.

Unfortunately there are reasons why that's particularly unlikely... :frown:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-56641597
Original post by Saracen's Fez
Unfortunately there are reasons why that's particularly unlikely... :frown:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-56641597

Ah I didn't know that it's a shame.
Rishi Sunak and Sajid Javid have resigned. Discussion thread here: https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/showthread.php?t=7235268

This will, however, lead to intense leadership speculation as this looks like the beginning of the end.
Temporarily closing this thread as we now have a leadership election thread here.

Will re-open once the new leader is elected for us all to speculate on their successor too. :lol:
Opening this thread back up now, let the speculation on how long Truss will get commence!
Given the Conservative Party’s obsession with wrecking the nation’s finances, I can realistically see Jeremy Corbyn taking the helm after Truss.
Original post by Crazed cat lady
Given the Conservative Party’s obsession with wrecking the nation’s finances, I can realistically see Jeremy Corbyn taking the helm after Truss.


Funny how a post probably aimed at bashing the Tories ended up bashing the Labour Party. :rolleyes:

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