This content is not available in your region

Theresa May has a clear lead in the UK leadership contest

Access to the comments Comments
Theresa May has a clear lead in the UK leadership contest
Text size Aa Aa

In the UK, Theresa May has won the first round of the contest to become the next leader of the Conservative Party and the country’s next prime minister.

With 165 votes out of 329, the interior minister came out well in the lead after the first round of voting by Conservative MPs.

It means her leadership bid is supported by 50% of the parliamentary party.

There is another female candidate in second place.

With 66 votes out of 329, Energy Minister Andrea Leadsom is supported by 20% of MPs.

Former Defence Secretary Liam Fox came in last in fifth place and was eliminated.

Stephen Crabb came fourth and dropped out.

Both have since given their backing to Theresa May.

The results

329 of the party’s 330 MPs took part in a secret ballot on Tuesday 5 July.

Out of 329 votes cast:

  • 165 – Theresa May (50%)
  • 66 – Andrea Leadsom (20%)
  • 48 – Michael Gove (15%)
  • Fourth – Stephen Crabb (10%)
  • Fifth – Liam Fox (5%)

    What happens now?

Further voting by MPs will narrow the field to two candidates.

There will then be a vote by all the members of the Conservative Party and the winner will be announced on 9 September.

Why are the Conservatives looking for a new leader?

Because David Cameron stepped down as prime minister after the UK decided to leave the EU in a recent referendum.