Liz Truss is set to secure the Tory leadership by a sizeable margin, according to the latest polling from YouGov.
The survey, conducted for Sky News, puts Truss way out in front, winning 66 per cent of party members‘ votes, with Rishi Sunak trailing on only 34 per cent – just over half the support enjoyed by his competitor.
Truss has also been winning the backing from a growing number of Tory MPs, with the latest count putting 152 backing Liz for Leader, and 124 MPs admitting to being Ready 4 Rishi. It’s a bitter pill to swallow for Sunak, who consistently topped the list of most popular candidates among Tory MPs in the early stages of the contest. One disgruntled Sunak insider told the Guardian: “Those who switch are doing it purely for their own careers and it’s spineless. No one forgets a switcher and it tends to end badly for them.
Truss’ campaign, by all accounts, is intensifying its charm offensive, hoping for more switches of allegiance from Sunak’s Commons support base. Tory campaign veteran Mark Fullbrook is thought to be at the forefront of converting Truss naysayers, with sources from the Truss campaign confirming that Fullbrook has been having “long conversations” with potential switchers.
Whilst “more than one is wobbly,” and one Sunak-backing senior minister is considering making the switch to the former chancellor’s rival, there are “not dozens” ready to turn their coats.
Sign up for our FREE Reaction Weekend Email
Read the week's best-read articles on politics, business and geopolitics
Receive offers and exclusive invites
Plus uplifting cultural commentary
With Sunak rapidly running out of road – and possibly looking for a McDonald’s Drive Thru – all eyes will be looking to Manchester for any last ditch attempts to win back support.