Sunak is biding his time and keeping his powder dry today. The bookies make him favourite. He had a bruising time last time.* The membership have warmed to him according to the latest YouGov polling:
Party members could vote online in a pretty straightforward and secure fashion. Not putting the MPs’ choices to the wider membership will be a mistake in this day and age. The days of the “Magic Circle” of MPs are over. A coronation would reduce the democratic legitimacy of the result even more and be another gift to the opposition.
Assuming Boris doesn’t fancy coming back next week, though The Times is reporting he is taking soundings, the leadership is Rishi’s to lose. One bit of advice Rishi: don’t tell the Tory members “I told you so”. It won’t endear you to the people who voted against you last time.