With 11 candidates announced so far, Conservative MPs are now deciding who they will back to become their next leader – and the new prime minister.

The rules of the race to replace Boris Johnson will be set out by the party’s 1922 committee on Monday evening.

But with so much runningparty officials are waiting reduce it “for serious candidates only”, increasing the level of MP support needed to stay in the running.

According to Sky News political editor Beth Rigby, leadership candidates may be needed at least 36 deputies (10% of the parliamentary party), supporting them to stay right.

Rishi Sunak – 35

Despite​​​​some setbacks in recent months, including an increase in national insurance and scrutiny of his wife’s tax affairs, the former chancellor is currently in the lead.

After resigning as chancellor last week, he has the support of just one cabinet member – the leader of the House of Commons, Mark Spencer.

More on the Tory leadership race

His supporters also include former party chairman Oliver Dowden, Theresa May’s international trade secretary Liam Fox, who helped oversee the Brexit negotiations, former housing secretary Robert Gerrick and Helen Whatley, the former finance minister.

Penny Mordaunt – 21

Penny Mordant

During Boris Johnson’s tenure, the international trade secretary has kept a low profile since he was sacked as defense secretary following a Downing Street appearance.

But she is still among the leaders.

No one in the current cabinet has publicly endorsed her, but as a staunch supporter of leaving the EU, she has the support of former House of Commons leader Andrea Leeds and staunch Johnson supporter Michael Fabricant, who describes her as a “social liberal”.

Tom Tugendhat – 18

Tom Tugendhat

Despite his lack of ministerial experience, Tom Tugendhat is another popular choice.

The ex-military man has long been critical of Mr Johnson, particularly over Britain’s withdrawal from Afghanistan, as chairman of the foreign affairs select committee.

Originally a Remainer but Brexit loyalist, he is backed by International Trade Secretary Anne Marie Trevelyan.

Liz Truss – 15

Liz Truss

Like Rishi Sunak, the foreign minister has long been touted as a potential successor to Boris Johnson.

She is the longest-serving cabinet member of any candidate – having served under David Cameron, Theresa May and Mr Johnson.

Ms. Truss also has the support of most cabinet members.

They include Work and Pensions Minister Theresa Coffey, Affairs Minister Kwasi Kwarteng and Chief Secretary to the Treasury Simon Clarke.

Nadhim Zahavi – 13

Nadhim Zahavi

After rising to prominence as vaccine minister during the pandemic, Mr Zahavi succeeded Rishi Sunak as chancellor.

So far, he is backed by former cabinet members Brandon Lewis – the former Northern Ireland Secretary – and Michelle Donnellan, who briefly served as education minister before the prime minister resigned.

Kemi Badenach – 13

Kemi Badenoch is a Conservative MP

Essex MP Kemi Badenoch has equaled the chancellor’s number of supporters.

The most prominent of her supporters is Michael Gove, who Boris Johnson sacked as promotion secretary after reportedly ordering him to resign before he caved to pressure last week.

Dr Caroline Johnson, deputy leader of the Conservative Party, also announced her support, saying she had “energy, clarity and vision”.

Suella Braverman – 11

Suella Braverman

Attorney-General Suella Braverman, who is pro-Brexit, has the support of many of her fellow Brexiteers, including campaigner Steve Baker and Sir Desmond Swain.

Mr Baker wrote in The Daily Telegraph that “without Suella there would be no Brexit”.

She remained loyal to Boris Johnson, claiming he had “broke the Brexit deadlock”.

Sajid Javid – 10

Sajid Javid

Throwing his hat into the ring for the second time, Sajid Javid has been backed largely by his former ministers since he stepped down as health secretary last week.

His old health secretary, Ed Argar, pledged his support after he also resigned last week, as did his former parliamentary private secretary during his time as chancellor, Rachel McLean.

Jeremy Hunt – 9

Jeremy Hunt

Former health secretary Jeremy Hunt is the second candidate making a second bid for the leadership.

His supporters include former work and pensions secretary Esther McVey, who, like him, served in Theresa May’s cabinet.

He said that if he wins, he will choose her as the deputy prime minister.

Andrew Mitchell, David Cameron’s chief of staff, also said he would back Mr Hunt for the leadership.

Grant Shapps – 7

Grant Shapps

The Transport Secretary is currently sitting far back in the competition.

His cabinet colleague, Environment Minister George Justice, came forward to support him, as did his transport colleague Robert Courts.

Rehman Chishti – 0

Rehman Chishti

Relatively unknown outside the Tory party and his constituency, Rehman Chishti is currently a minister in the Foreign Office.

As the latest to announce his candidacy, he has yet to receive any public declarations of support – but that is likely to change soon.

The Conservative leadership debate: being in the audience

Tory leadership candidates

Sky News is hosting a live televised debate with the contenders to be the next leader of the Conservative Party and, by extension, Prime Minister, and you can be in the virtual audience.

The debate will be hosted by Sky News presenter Kay Burleigh on Monday 18 July.

If you would like to be part of the virtual audience and have the opportunity to ask a question, please send an email NewsDebates@sky.uk

https://news.sky.com/story/conservative-leadership-contest-how-many-backers-does-each-candidate-have-so-far-12649875

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