Following the resignation of Boris Johnson as Prime Minister, this is what can happen from now on:
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What happens after the official resignation of the prime minister?
Johnson has announced that he will stay on as prime minister until Conservative MPs have chosen a new leader, possibly until the autumn. But on previous occasions, prime ministers have avoided serving in that transition period. For Johnson, like David Cameron, that prospect might be too humiliating or impractical and he might choose to leave immediately instead. If so, there would have to be another interim prime minister while the process of electing his successor lasts.
On the other hand, there are those within the party who are pushing for Johnson to stay as short as possible. This Thursday the former Prime Minister John Major has proposed that an interim substitute be appointed or the succession process be accelerated because he considers that Johnson’s permanence is “foolish and may be unsustainable.”
Could Deputy Prime Minister Dominic Raab be acting Prime Minister?
Raab, until now Minister for Justice and Deputy Prime Minister, was Acting Prime Minister when Johnson was hospitalized for Covid in the spring of 2020. However, the Acting Prime Minister should not be one of the candidates for succession, so that if Raab decides to run he could turn down the job.
Who else could apply for the interim prime minister position?
Some members of the Conservative Party have called for Theresa May – who led the government between 2016 and 2019 – to take over as acting prime minister. Other leading government ministers could also play that role.
How will the new prime minister be chosen?
Conservative MPs will make a first selection – the prime minister will be appointed by the Torieswhich is the party that has the majority in Parliament – and then the party’s affiliates will intervene.
To run as a candidate, a deputy must have the express support of eight colleagues. If there are more than two suitors, the conservative deputies express themselves in successive votes until only two names remain. Then the election is in the hands of the party members who have to decide between the two candidates before the deadline established by the 1922 Committee, the body that brings together deputies without positions in the Government.
How long can the process take?
In 2019, when Johnson replaced May, the entire succession process took about six weeks. If the new leader wins the confidence of the House of Commons, no new elections would be called.
Who can run as successor to Boris Johnson?
A number of Conservative MPs and ministers are expected to apply, including Rishi Sunak, until Tuesday Chancellor of the Exchequer, Liz Truss, Foreign Secretary Sajid Javid, until Tuesday Minister for Health, Penny Mordaunt, former Defense Minister, and Ben Wallace, Defense Minister. At the moment, it is known that the attorney general, Suella Braverman, intends to run and that the veteran pro-Brexit campaigner Steve Baker has said that his colleagues have urged him to run. The president of the parliamentary foreign committee, Tom Tugenhadt, and former minister Jake Berry have also indicated that they will run.
Translation of Mariangela Paone