Rishi Sunak v Liz Truss: latest Conservative leadership opinion polls - who will be next UK Prime Minister?

Liz Truss is reportedly the favourite amongst Conservative Party voters for the leadership

Liz Truss is ahead of Rishi Sunak in the Tory leadership race to replace Boris Johnson as Prime Minister - according to a new poll.

A YouGov poll of 730 Conservative Party members - taken on Wednesday (20 July) evening and Thursday (21 July) morning - found that the current Foreign Secretary would beat the former Chancellor by 62% to 38%.

This marks a 24 percentage point lead for the South West Norfolk MP, which is up from a 20 percentage point lead two days prior.

Ms Truss is the favourite amongst Tory party voters

What do the results of the poll mean?

As things stand, 31% of the membership intend to vote for Mr Sunak, while 49% intend to vote for Ms Truss.

A further 15% are undecided, and 6% currently said they will abstain.

YouGov explained that, after those who are unsure or plan to abstain are excluded, this puts the voting intention at 62% for the Foreign Secretary and 38% for the former Chancellor.

Ms Truss’ lead is significant as although winning over those who are undecided would make a difference for Mr Sunak, it still would not be enough to tip the scales - so the MP has his work cut out for him.

According to the YouGov poll, Ms Truss beats Mr Sunak in every age category and gender demographic, and also is viewed as more trustworthy amongst voters.

Liz Truss is the favourite for PM amongst voters

While just 18% of Tory party members said Ms Truss could not be trusted, 40% said Mr Sunak could not.

YouGov added: Ms Truss “holds sizable advantages over Rishi Sunak on key metrics such as trustworthiness and ability to lead the party”.

The increase in support for Ms Truss is interesting as following the previous poll - published by YouGov on 19 July - Sky News reported that Mr Sunak’s campaign argued they had gained momentum and were closing the gap.

This poll says otherwise.

The upcoming TV debates (the first of which is on BBC One at 9pm tonight), as well as the hustings events taking place across the country, will now be more important than ever for Mr Sunak if he hopes to gain the support of party members before they cast their votes.

Ms Truss will be looking to maintain her momentum - and keep party members on her side for as long as possible.

One MP told the BBC: “[The debate] is so important. Every party member will see the debate, hear reports about it, clips from it, or be left with some sense of who won it.”

In terms of odds, betting site Ladbrokes places Ms Truss at 2/5 and Mr Sunak at 15/8.

Who came out on top in the previous votes?

Mr Sunak was the frontrunner throughout the contest and beat his fellow leadership contenders in all of the previous voting rounds.

In the most recent vote, the results were:

  • Rishi Sunak – 137
  • Liz Truss – 113
  • Penny Mordaunt - 105 (Eliminated)

However, these votes were cast by Tory MPs, who no longer have a say in the race.

The ultimate decision on who becomes the next leader of the Conservative Party now lies with Tory party voters, and the figures place Mr Truss as the favourite - and Mr Sunak as the underdog.

We will only truly know which way voters are leaning when the Prime Minister is officially announced on 5 September.