Penny Mordaunt’s Tory leadership bid boosted as Braverman exits

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The Guardian

Suella Braverman is out of the Conservative leadership race as the field narrowed to five candidates with Rishi Sunak still leading on votes from Conservative MPs.

Sunak, the former chancellor, is expected to face either the foreign secretary, Liz Truss, or the trade minister Penny Mordaunt in the final run-off. Kemi Badenoch, the former equalities minister, and Tom Tugendhat also made it through the latest round.

Candidates are expected to take part in televised debates over the weekend before the final rounds of voting next week to narrow the choice to two candidates, who will then be put to Conservative party members.

Truss stressed her cabinet experience as she launched her campaign for the leadership on Thursday morning.

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“I can lead, I can make tough decisions and I can get things done,” she told an event in Westminster. “I am ready to be prime minister from day one.”

In the first round, Truss came a relatively distant third with 50 votes, behind the former chancellor Rishi Sunak, on 88 and Penny Mordaunt, a junior trade minister, with 67.

July 14, 2022 at 10:22PM Jessica Elgot Chief political correspondent

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