Rishi Sunak Level With Keir Starmer To Be Next Prime Minister

Rishi Sunak Level With Keir Starmer To Be Next Prime Minister
© PA

Rishi Sunak is now the joint-favourite with Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer to be the next Prime Minister of the UK.

Conservative chancellor Sunak is one of the key figures in Boris Johnson’s government as the country contends with a coronavirus second wave, an economic recession and Brexit.

He has overseen the popular furlough scheme that kept nine million workers employed, and is drawing up plans for a secondary – albeit reduced – furlough heading into the winter.

The MP for Richmond has for months been the frontrunner to replace Johnson as Conservative party leader, should the latter step down before the next election, which is scheduled for 2024.

And now Sunak is just as likely as Starmer to get the top job.

Next Prime Minister Odds Explained

According to the latest politics betting markets from BoyleSports, Sunak and Starmer are neck-and-neck at 9/4 favourites to be the next PM.

Sunak’s price has plummeted from 4/1 within a week as he ramps up his plans for a second furlough, which would be widely welcomed among the public and businesses.

Starmer, as leader of the opposition, had commanded a lead in this betting market during the summer – not because a snap election was in the pipeline, but because it appeared as though Johnson would see out his full term and lead the Tories into the 2024 election.

But all that has changed in recent weeks, with reports Johnson could quit his post long before voters return to the polls in four years’ time.

The 56-year-old is said to be “hating” life at the top of the political pile and could jump once Brexit has been sewn up in 2021.

And this opens the door for another Conservative to take up the position of prime minister before Starmer has the chance to stake his claim.

Gove Odds Fall Dramatically

But while Sunak, 40, is the lead Tory to capture Johnson’s throne, he is not alone in chasing the job.

Michel Gove – the cabinet minister in charge of planning for a No Deal Brexit – is the firm third-favourite behind Sunak and Starmer after his odds crashed from 8/1 to 4/1.

Gove ran for the Tory leadership in 2019 before losing out to Johnson, but is in a prime position to push for the job now. The former journalist is a firm Brexiteer and carries plenty of support among the Tory faithful. Should the UK fall onto No Deal terms with the EU then Gove’s stock among MPs will rise even further.

As for other candidates for the job, they all appear way behind this trio. Foreign secretary Dominic Raab (16/1) has never really been a vogue choice for the job, while home secretary Priti Patel (28/1) and health secretary Matt Hancock (40/1) are way out of the betting.