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Rivals Rishi Sunak and Boris Johnson met on Saturday

According to Sunday Telegraphthe two former ministers spoke of a “joint candidacy” to avoid a “civil war” for the Tories following Liz Truss’s resignation as Prime Minister.

Former British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his former Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak, who widened the gap in the race for the head of the British government, met on Saturday night. The first had returned to London in the morning after a holiday in the Caribbean, which reinforced the hypothesis of his candidacy in the race for Downing Street. He met Rishi Sunak to discuss competition within the Conservative Party to succeed the departed Liz Truss, according to several media outlets, including the BBC.

Boris Johnson and Rishi Sunak, whose resignation had led to his boss, have not yet publicly launched this blitzkrieg. According to Sunday Telegraphthey talked aboutjoint candidacy“to avoid tories a”civil war“.

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After the resignation of Liz Truss, who remained in power for only 44 days, three names have emerged: the current Minister for Relations with Parliament Penny Mordaunt, who formalized her candidacy on Friday, Rishi Sunak, who had lost in early September against Liz Truss, and Boris Johnson, who resigned in July after a series of scandals.

James Duddridge, an ally of Boris Johnson in Parliament, had on Friday night reported an exchange with his “chief“. “He said: ‘We will do it, I’m ready’“, according to this deputy. The former prime minister left parliament on July 20 and launched “Hasta la vista, baby!“.

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Rishi Sunak, whose resignation from the Johnson government was followed by around sixty others, is the first to have crossed the threshold of 100 sponsorships required on Friday night to hope to take the leadership of the Conservative Party and therefore win Downing Street.

Boris Johnson would also have surpassed 100, according to James Duddridge, but this has not been confirmed. And he is still far behind in the media that do the counting. According to the Guido Fawkes site, which closely follows the upheavals of the race, Rishi Sunak had 128 sponsorships on Saturday afternoon, ahead of Boris Johnson (72) and Penny Mordaunt (25).

Candidates have until Monday afternoon to obtain these sponsorships. The 357 Conservative MPs will vote first, and if there are two candidates left in the running, the 170,000 party members will have to decide between them in an internet vote by 28 October. In the case of a single candidate, he would go straight into Downing Street at the start of the week.

Much of the game was played behind the scenes on Saturday for the duel between Johnson and Sunak, who have been at loggerheads since this summer as each tried to secure more sponsorships, further dividing the Tories.

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