Poll of Tory members gives Liz Truss 22-point lead to be next prime minister

Liz Truss holds a commanding 22-point lead over Rishi Sunak in the race to become the next Tory leader and prime minister, according to an exclusive poll of party members for the Observer.

With less than three weeks to go before the September 2 deadline for voting, the survey by Opinium of 570 Conservative members puts the foreign secretary on 61% and the former chancellor on 39%.

The polls

Truss’s lead is, however, less than in some other recent polls of the Tory electorate, possibly suggesting that Sunak may have closed the gap in recent days.

She has come under increasing pressure over her refusal to back what she describes as “handouts” to help people with their energy bills, and was heavily criticised for a U-turn over pay rises for public sector workers outside London and the south-east of England.

Opinium’s detailed questioning also uncovers a striking lack of enthusiasm for either candidate when members are asked whether they would prefer one of them to Boris Johnson to…

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This article was written by Toby Helm, political editor and originally published on www.theguardian.com