The UK Leadership Race Update: The Final Ballots

Is Rory Stewart heading for the number 2 spot to ruffle Johnson’s feathers? Today’s ballot and TV debate will garner plenty of interest.
Bob Mason

The Second Ballot

Boris Johnson came out ahead in the 2nd ballot on Tuesday, with 126 votes. Of the 50 additional votes on offer, Boris Johnson got just 12 extra votes. The 50 additional votes came from last week’s 1st ballot departures and Matt Hancock’s decision to pull out.

Jeremy Hunt failed to draw in the crowd, with just 3 additional votes to total 46 votes. In spite of the marginal increase in support, Jeremy Hunt maintained his 2nd place on Tuesday.

Interestingly, Michael Gove and Sajid Javid saw their vote count increase by 4 votes and 10 votes respectively.

Michael Gove ended with 41 votes to place him just behind Jeremy Hunt. While Sajid Javid saw strong support, a total of 33 votes leaves him as an outsider going into today’s ballot.

Also on the outside, but making a strong run for the number 2 spot was Rory Stewart, who seized the lion’s share of the additional votes on offer. Stewart ended with 37 votes on Tuesday, to place him in the number 4 spot behind Michael Gove.

Dominic Raab fell 3 short of the minimum 33 votes required to go into today’s ballot. Raab joined, Leadsom, Harper, McVey, and Hancock on the sidelines.

While Boris Johnson continues to remain favorite, the real question will be whether Jeremy Hunt or Michael Gove can hold off Stewart to become Johnson’s rival come Saturday.

Who’s Left in the Running

Boris Johnson, Michael Gove, Sajid Javid, Rory Stewart, and Jeremy Hunt go into today’s ballot.

While Boris Johnson remains the man to beat, the real battle is for the number 2 spot. With an extra 30 votes on offer, following Dominic Raab’s departure, there are enough votes to push Rory Stewart into the number 2 spot.

While few are expecting Johnson to fail to make it to Saturday’s vote, who makes the number 2 spot will be of material importance.

What Lies Ahead

Expectations are that Rory Stewart will now be amongst the remaining candidates to go into today’s lived televised debate. The candidate with the fewest votes will be eliminated today and going on current support, Sajid Javid looks to be on his way to the sidelines.

That would leave Johnson, Gove, Stewart, and Hunt in today’s televised debate. It could get interesting with Stewart beginning to make a move…

Following tonight’s debate, a 4th ballot is scheduled for tomorrow afternoon and a 5th later in the day to leave the last two men standing.

Why is the 2nd candidate so important?

Boris Johnson looks to have the first part of the leadership race wrapped up. With 126 votes, it’s all about the number 2 spot.

The outcome to Saturday’s vote could be materially different from the ballot results from over the last week. The results are not due out until late July.

160,000 conservative party members go to the vote. What has become clear from the televised debates is that there are no pro-remainers and amongst the Brexiteers, Boris Johnson remains the hard Brexiteer.

With the EU unwilling to negotiate further and the UK parliament against Britain leaving without a deal, it could be another difficult time ahead for the Pound.

Talk of leaving the EU, with or without a deal, may ultimately be nothing more than showboating. As Theresa May discovered, it’s not that easy getting the Brexit ducks aligned…

At the time of writing, the Pound was up by just 0.01% to $1.25568. The lack of movement comes as the markets look ahead to inflation figures due out later this morning and today’s ballot.

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