Rishi Sunak appoints new role so Tories can ‚hold Labour to account‘ | Politics | News

Outgoing Conservative leader Rishi Sunak has appointed a new interim chief whip – in order to hold Keir Starmer’s new Labour government ‚to account immediately‘.

The former Prime Minister appointed Stuart Andrew to the position as part of his duties overseeing the transition of the Conservatives into Opposition after their landslide general election defeat.

Mr Andrew previously served as Government Deputy Chief Whip between 2020 and 2022 and has held a number of ministerial roles.

He was previously MP for the now abolished constituency of Pudsey from 2010 until 2024, but was elected to represent Daventry in the General Election with a majority of 3,192.

Speaking after his appointment, he said: “I am delighted to have been appointed as Opposition chief whip.“

He added: “I know there will be much frustration within the party about the disappointing election results we saw this week. Our focus now more than ever must be to come together as a united party.

“We will be ready and willing to provide the strong and effective Opposition to the Government that the British public deserves.”

It remains unclear who will replace Mr Sunak as Tory leader – with a number of expected frontrunners including Penny Mordaunt losing their constituencies in the election, thus ruling her out.

Former Home Secretary Suella Braverman has said she had “no announcements” about the race to replace Mr Sunak as leader after the crushing election defeat to Labour.

Other potential leadership candidates include Priti Patel, former Home Secretary James Cleverly and former Health Secretary Victoria Atkins – with former Chancellor Jeremy Hunt ruling himself out.

Conservative MPs usually vote to select the top two candidates to put forward as potential leaders, with the party membership choosing the ultimate winner, although the rules and timeline of the race would be set out by the backbench 1922 Committee.

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