Boris’ Buddy Truss Now Has 90% Chance of Being Next Prime Minister

Liz Truss

Credit: Number 10 via flickr

Those of a punting persuasion may be familiar with the term ‘implied probability’.

This dictates that betting odds, where accurately compiled, reveal the likely percentage chance of an event occurring.

Numerically-minded individuals can do the maths themselves, and there’s plenty of online calculators and apps that will put in the hard yards for you.

Whichever way you look at it, the implied probability count in the race to be next prime minister does not make for positive reading for Rishi Sunak.

His odds of 9/1 in the Next Conservative Leader betting market carry an implied probability of 10% – in short, the former chancellor is a seriously long underdog in the race.

Conversely, and in a nice bit of math that even I can figure out without having to count fingers, toes and other appendages, it means that Liz Truss now has a 90% probability of winning the race for 10 Downing Street.

So, she’s a shoe-in, right?

Who Will Be the Next Prime Minister?

Downing Street Sign

It’s a slightly confusing numbers game.

Messrs Truss and Sunak are actually pretty close in the voting amongst their Conservative Party colleagues, but the problem for the latter is that every time a candidate has been eliminated from the contest, voters have had a chance to reassign their pick – and, to that end, Truss has been gaining an average of 22% of votes each round, with Sunak down at 11%.

So, in the end, it’s likely that Truss will head off Sunak comfortably as they embark on their summer roadshow of hustings and campaigning.

Truss, the foreign secretary, has long been an ally of Boris Johnson’s, and there are plenty of Tories who believe that BoJo should not have resigned and should still be in charge – to that end, Truss gets their vote as the next best option.

She has become a representative of the people, in some ways, having campaigned for tax cuts and other benefits for hard hit households. But the chancellor is rather more pragmatic in that regard, and he’s not overly keen on cutting tax in order to curry favour or put money back into people’s pockets – he’s already initiated a cut on National Insurance payments in the months gone by.

Sunak is considered by plenty of Conservative members to be something of a snake in the grass – timing his own resignation letter to impose as much pressure on Boris to fall on his sword as possible.

What you need in these contests is support from fellow MPs of repute and standing, and that’s another tick in the box next to Truss’ name. This week, she has garnered the backing of Ben Wallace, the defence secretary who is seen as an increasingly inspirational figure within the Cabinet.

Of course, politics is essentially a popularity contest – adults playing at childish games. Interestingly, a new poll reveals that Sunak would be a more popular Conservative leader amongst swing voters….which, given the current political landscape in the UK and general antipathy to the Tories, is something of a feather in his cap.

The question now is whether or not party members believe the bloke with a 10% implied probability of becoming the next prime minister is an underdog worth backing or not.

Could Boris Johnson Be Prime Minister Again?

Boris Johnson

Credit: shganti777 / bigstockphoto

In his final act as PM, Boris signed off his last Prime Minister’s Questions with the refrain ‘hasta la vista, baby’.

But you wonder if it’s another of the Terminator’s catchphrases – ‘I’ll be back’ – that will prove to be more apt.

There is a growing sense within the Conservative Party that BoJo was hard done by in essentially being forced to resign – despite opinion polls f the public suggesting that was an absolute necessity.

A petition to have a vote on his potential return picked up more than 10,000 signatures of Tory members in a single week, and politics’ own Mr Teflon may just be eyeing a return to the fold at some point in the future.

In theory, his name could be added to the ballot that ultimately crowns the next Conservative leader, although the truth is that would be a pretty poor bit of timing as Truss and Sunak try to validate themselves as a prime minister in the making.

While Boris remains an active MP, which he is for the Uxbridge and South Ruislip constituency, he could return as prime minister with the backing of his party – his political aspirations haven’t been completely terminated as yet, you fancy.