On Sunday, former prime minister Boris Johnson announced his withdrawal from the race to become the next leader of Great Britain. He said he had received enough votes from parliamentarians to advance to the next round, but considerably fewer than front-runner former finance minister Rishi Sunak.
“There is a very good chance that I would be successful in the election with Conservative Party members – and that I could indeed be back in Downing Street on Friday,” Johnson said in a statement.
“But in the course of the last days I have sadly come to the conclusion that this would simply not be the right thing to do. You can’t govern effectively unless you have a united party in parliament.”
Johnson, who never formally declared his intention to run for office again, spent the weekend attempting to win over Conservative legislators. On Sunday, he claimed to have secured the backing of 102 of them.
He needed 100 votes by Monday to go to the next round, where he would have faced off against Sunak in front of the Conservative Party’s 170,000 members.
According to Sky News, Sunak, whose resignation as finance minister in July contributed to Johnson’s downfall, passed the need of 100 parliamentarians and secured 142 declared supporters on Sunday.
Unless Penny Mordaunt receives the required 100 votes to necessitate a run-off vote among party members, he will be elected leader of the Conservative Party and become prime minister on Monday. On Sunday, she had 24 formally announced supporters.