Wallace sees off top competitors by wide margins in head to head contests
With Boris Johnson announcing that he is standing down as Conservative leader, but wants to stay on as prime minister until the autumn, the race is now on to succeed him.
New snap YouGov polling of 716 Conservative party members shows at first glance that the field appears to be diverse. Ben Wallace tops the list, at 13%, neck and neck with Penny Mordaunt (12%). Rishi Sunak takes 10% and Liz Truss scores 8%. Jeremy Hunt, who came second in the 2019 Conservative leadership contest, places joint eighth on 5%, alongside new chancellor Nadhim Zahawi.
But while the single top choice looks to be contentious, our polling facing five of the candidates off against one another results in a very clear winner: Ben Wallace.
Wallace wins all of his match-ups by wide margins. His closest competitor is Rishi Sunak, whom he sees off by 51% to 30%. He beats both Liz Truss and Penny Mordaunt handily with 48% of the vote to their 26-29%. And most Conservative members (58%) prefer him over Jeremy Hunt (22%).
Liz Truss is a distant second in the head to heads, being firmly favoured over Jeremy Hunt but only narrowly defeating Rishi Sunak (by 5pts) and Penny Mordaunt (by 6pts).
Sunak and Mordaunt effectively tie their head to head (by 38% to 40%), while Hunt – who took a third of the vote at the 2019 leadership context – loses all of his match-ups by wide margins.