Wishy Washy Rishi Sunak: UK's Ambitious Chancellor and Embattled Prime Minister Boris Johnson.
From the time Rishi Sunak was promoted by Boris, to be the Chancellor, many were touting this 'golden boy' to be Boris's replacement, one day. Well, it would seem, that day for Rishi Sunak could be drawing near.
With the allegations of 'party gate', it seems Sunak thinks that Boris will not survive this. As the Sue Gray report into what or what not may have taken place, it is alleged Mr. Sunak has or is preparing a leadership bid. Ever the savvy operator, Mr. Sunak has honed his brand in the media, social media, and, in actual person. The current alleged dummy leadership campaign is based on the glossy No 11 Newsletter. Mr. Sunak is alleged to have built a marketing strategy saying why he would be a better Prime Minister than Boris. Mr. Sunak is said, to have taken soundings from 10 Downing Street staff, taking into account, the Met Police investigation and the Sue Gray report, as to whether he would get sufficient support in a leadership bid.
The Met Police investigation may delay any Rishi Sunak leadership bid, it is, thought. There are allegations that there may be an agreement between Boris and the Met Police, that Sue Gray's report may be watered down. Possibly to protect Boris, but also, so it does not clash with the police's ongoing investigation. Mr. Sunak, whether he launches a leadership bid or not and stories are true that he has in place a leadership campaign to go, will bide his time. Bide his time, seeing which way the wind is blowing and whether Boris will be booted out of No 10. Boris may have to face a vote in the Commons, as to whether he can carry on as Prime Minister. There may be another reason if Boris does not survive a vote of no confidence in the Commons, for Rishi to launch his leadership.
Sunak has one Cass Horowitz in his armory. Horowitz has been described as a 'Golden Boy' in the intelligence he has shown in advising Mr. Sunak. Horowitz is also responsible for how Sunak's public image is shown to the public. Rishi will need the PR, marketing, and social media skills of Horowitz, in any leadership battle.
Sunak will not be alone, however, when launching a leadership bid, should the chance arise. Foreign Minister and Brexit Minister, Liz Truss, (who has Margaret Thatcher delusions of grandeur), will be a formidable opponent, for Mr. Sunak. Tom Tugendhat, has indicated, he would be willing to throw his hat in the ring, as a possible successor to Boris. Others too, like Nadhim Zahawi, Sajid Javid, Michael Gove, etc, may also declare their candidacy, if Boris falls. Others unknown right now may also want to take a run at replacing Boris. Obviously, if Boris falls, Dominic Raab Deputy Prime Minister will take the reigns of power temporarily until a winner is declared to succeed Boris. It is possible, Raab himself may toy with the idea of running for the job of Tory leader and Prime Minister.
One Tory source has stated that they do not understand why Liz Truss has been criticized for her open display of wanting to be Prime Minister, when Sunak, has not.
One source coming out of Sunak's office has stated that this all talk of Sunak, preparing a leadership campaign, is false. False or not, it will not have gone unnoticed that Sunak has been giving Boris lukewarm or delayed support in 10 Downing Street. Sunak's lukewarm or delayed support for Boris over 'party gate', shows he does not want his brand lumped in with Boris' antics. Also, in any leadership bid, he does not want any association with Boris and parties, to damage him.
The coming weeks, months, and the entire year of 2022 will define Boris as to whether he falls or manages to cling on to his job, at No 10. Certainly, even if Boris survives it is possible he could turn round his popularity as he is known as the Teflon Prime Minister. However, should Boris survive party gate and if the present polls are to be believed, then Boris along with his government could be kicked out of office, come 2024.
The coming days, weeks, and months, will also define Rishi Sunak's future as it will people like Liz Truss, Tom Tugendhat, and all those who wish to replace Boris.