TORY chiefs are meeting tonight to decide when Boris Johnson will make way for Britain’s next Prime Minister.
Party bosses on the ruling 1922 executive will formally fire the starting gun on the race to be the next Conservative leader.
The race for Downing Street is on[/caption]
They will lay out a timetable as early as this evening to whittle down the crowded field of wannabe PMs to just two by the end of July.
The top two will then tour the country jockeying for the votes of grassroots members at rounds of hustings before the final vote.
Many Tory MPs want to rush through the race to thin down the crowded 11-strong field and get a new leader quickly.
The 1922 Chair Sir Graham Brady is expected to raise the threshold of backers wannabe leaders need to chip away the no-hopers.
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The newly-elected executive committee is meeting tonight to finalise the rules before nominations open tomorrow.
In key developments:
- Nadhim Zahawi pledged a whopping tax cuts bonanza
- Sajid Javid also vowed to give away £40bn in tax cuts if he wins
- Priti Patel was mulling making a last-gasp bid for the top job
- Boris Johnson refused to row behind any of the candidates
Rishi Sunak is the early runaway frontrunner and has racked up 37 colleagues to back his No10 bid.
Penny Mordaunt is hot on his heels with 22, and Tom Tugendhat not far behind.
Liz Truss, Nadhim Zahawi, Sajid Javid, Kemi Badenoch, Jeremy Hunt, Suella Braverman and Grant Shapps are also in the running.
Mr Zahawi today unveiled a tax cuts bonanza that he claims will save squeezed families £900.
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The Chancellor pledged to shave a penny off the 20p income tax basic rate next year and take it down to 18p in 2024.
He also vowed to wipe VAT and green levies off energy bills for two years if elected to help Brits with soaring fuel prices.
And he said that since moving to the Treasury five days ago he is already looking to scrap the planned corporation tax rise.
He said: “Let me be clear. Tax as a percentage of GDP will fall year on year if I become prime minister. That is a promise.”