Rishi Sunak was leading the race to become the next Prime Minister on Friday night as he reached the 100-nomination threshold to make it to the next stage of the Tory leadership contest, according to a campaign source.
The former Chancellor, who has not formally declared his announcement to run, was said to have passed the threshold just before 10pm on Friday night after a string of influential Tories declared their support.
A total of 42 MPs had publicly backed Boris Johnson while 21 had backed Penny Mordaunt, according to a tally by the BBC. Every candidate will need the support of at least 100 MPs to progress to the next round, in which the Tory members will vote for the next PM in an online poll.
The Standard could not independently verify the claim made by Mr Sunak’s campaign.
Elsewhere, momentum was continuing to build for Mr Johnson after four Cabinet ministers expressed their support. Leveling Up Secretary Simon Clarke, Defence Secretary Ben Wallace, Transport Secretary Anne Marie Trevelyan and Business Secretary Jacob Rees-Mogg all indicated they would support his return to No10.

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