By William Hill
24th May 2019
Theresa May is to stand down as the UK prime minister on Friday 7th June, which means that her tenure at the top narrowly exceeds that of Gordon Brown – another PM who will be remembered as a failure.
This means that for the second time in three years, the PM will be a Conservative MP that has not been chosen by the electorate.
Instead, party rules indicate that Tory MPs will select two candidates to go head-to-head for the responsibility and then it will be down to votes from approximately 120,000 party members to decide on May’s successor.
There are thought to be around 17 potential candidates prepared to throw their name into the hat, with the Next Prime Minister betting regarding Boris Johnson as the favourite at 11/10.
Johnson’s previous exploits include a brief tenure as one of the more gaffe prone foreign secretaries ever, writing front-page fabrications at the Times and getting stuck mid-air on a zip wire.
He would be another somewhat marmite leader of the party.
Furthermore, Johnson’s relationship with the EU is not the strongest following the reputation garnered during his time as foreign secretary.
Having him as PM may limit the prospect of gaining a further Article 50 extension, which is currently due to draw to a close on 31st October. It’s currently 5/4 outsider that the UK will not be in the EU at the end of 2019.
The other leading betting contenders
Following Johnson in the Next Prime Minister odds is Dominic Raab at 9/2, who was appointed Brexit secretary by May in June before resigning from her cabinet in November after being one of the biggest critics of her Brexit deal.
It remains to be seen how much of a boost this will be to his prospects among Tory MPs.
Jeremy Hunt comes next at 10/1 and much may hinge on whether he’s done enough to convince the party of his true position, having traditionally been a remainer, before attempting to convince of his commitment to Brexiteer.
In his favour is that tough negotiations won’t be anything new to him based on his lengthy and controversy-dogged stint as health secretary.
Also at 10/1 are Michael Gove and Andrea Leadsom, with Jeremy Corbyn at 20/1, although this would obviously hinge on, firstly a general election being agreed and secondly Labour winning such an election.