West Midlands Mayor Andy Street reveals who he is backing to be Prime Minister

The West Midlands mayor has thrown his support behind one of the Conservative candidates who is running to replace Boris Johnson as Prime Minister

The UK is set to announce who will become the next Prime Minister.

Former Chancellor Rishi Sunak and Foreign Secretary Liz Truss are the final candidates hoping to take over from former Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

Johnson was forced to step down after his handling of sexual assault allegations against former Deputy Chief Whip Chris Pincher. The former PM has stayed on in Downing Street in a caretaker role, until his successor is selected. The final ballot, where party members cast their deciding vote is due to be held on Friday 2 September, 2022.

And West Midlands Mayor Andy Street has revealed that he is backing Liz Truss to take over from Johnson.

Andy Street, Mayor of the West Midlands, shares his thoughts on the heatwave

What did the West Midlands Mayor say?

Writing in his Telegraph column, Mr Street said that having spoken with both candidates, and “taken time to reflect, my conclusion is that Liz Truss should be our next prime minister.”

He highlighted four reasons for his decision.

He said:“First, we need a prime minister who can inject dynamism into our economy and create more high-quality, well-paid jobs right across the country. In time, that approach is the only way of addressing cost of living concerns, with so many facing the challenge of low-paid jobs.

At this moment of national “reset” following Covid and geopolitical turmoil, Liz Truss’s Plan for Growth, which will concentrate on new hi-tech sectors, has to be right. Second, we need a prime minister utterly committed to delivering levelling up. Third, we need a prime minister who is willing to do what it takes to seize the opportunities net zero offers. Liz gets this.

“And finally, we need a prime minister who can lead in a values-driven way, whilst guaranteeing our nation’s stature in the world. As she has shown while facing down Vladimir Putin, Liz Truss is not afraid to stand up for our values.”

Liz Truss addresses the second Conservative party membership hustings in Exeter on Monday (Picture: Finnbarr Webster/Getty Images)

Who is the favourite?

Rishi Sunak appears to have lost ground in the Tory leadership race but a reported ballot delivery delay over security concerns could give him more time to make an impression before votes are cast.

A YouGov poll puts Liz Truss well ahead of the former chancellor in support from party members, with her lead increasing to 34 points. It shows that 60% of the party members polled between July 29 and August 2 say they intend to vote for the Foreign Secretary, up from 49% since the period July 20 to 21 when the rivals first made the cut for the final two.

Support for Mr Sunak has dropped from 31% to 26%, according to YouGov, while the rest of the 1,043 Conservative Party members polled say they are undecided or will not vote. In a further blow to Mr Sunak, YouGov data also showed 83% of those who currently say they intend to vote for Ms Truss also say they have made up their mind.

Just 17% say they might change their mind, while 29% of Mr Sunak’s supporters say they could still vote differently. But the Sunak campaign will be hoping the additional time to make their case before the first votes are cast will fall in their favour.

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