LONDON — Seven weeks after being defeated in his first bid to lead Britain, former Treasury chief Rishi Sunak is set to replace Liz Truss as prime minister and make history as the first person of color in the role.
Sunak, 42, emerged victorious Monday in a lightning-fast contest by the ruling Conservatives to select a new party leader and, by extension, the U.K.’s new prime minister. The process began after Truss resigned Thursday as the shortest-serving premier in the nation’s history, following a turbulent tenure that roiled the markets and sparked chaos among the Conservative parliamentary rank and file.
In a dizzying turnaround of political fortune, Sunak was the only leadership candidate to receive the minimum 100 signatures required from fellow Conservative lawmakers by a Monday afternoon deadline. Rival Penny Mordaunt failed to secure enough backers, and former Prime Minister Boris Johnson pulled out of the running late Sunday.