Conservative leadership race: Rishi Sunak & Penny Mordaunt last push - what happens when contest closes today

By the end of the week, the UK will have a new Prime Minister but what happens on deadline day of a leadership race?

The UK will soon have a new Prime Minister, in fact we could see a new figure step into Number 10 by the end of the day. That will all depend on the number of backers the two remaining candidates can secure by this afternoon’s nomination deadline window.

With Boris Johnson now having dropped out of the leadership race, the field of prospective new Prime Minister’s is now between bookies favourite and runner up in the last race against Liz Truss, Rishi Sunak, and Penny Mordaunt - who was also part of the most recent leadership race.

Whatever happensEither way, by this eveninge end of Monday, the UK shouldwill know who is set to lead the country through a cost of living crisis, an energy crisis and a crippling rise in inflation that is showing no sign of easing up in the near future.

So what happens in the event Penny Mordaunt decides to drop out, or doesn’t reach the crucial 100 backers threshold? Will Rishi Sunak by default become the new Prime Minister, or are there any other parliamentary hurdles he will have to traverse before taking to power?

Here’s everything you need to know about what happens during deadline day in this political party race, including a schedule of events, as the UK begins to draw closer to its third Prime Minister in just six years.

When is the tory leadership vote?

Today will see  Mordaunt and  Sunak make a last push  to secure the votes of at least 100 Tory MPs in order to continue into the next round of leadership voting. BBC News is currently reporting Sunak has the public support of 155 MPs while Penny Mordaunt has 25, however, this doesn’t take into account those MPs who don’t wish to reveal which candidate they are backing.

Boris Johnson, who pulled out of the leadership race on Sunday evening, had 54 known backers who will now need to switch  support to Sunak, who was seen as an instigator in Johnson’s resignation, or Mordaunt.

By 2pm, the window for nomination will be closed and if only one candidate has gained the necessary support of at least 100 Conservative MPs, that person will by default become the next leader of the Conservative party and the country.

Leader of the House of Commons and Conservative leadership candidate Penny Mordaunt leaves BBC Broadcasting House in London, after appearing on the BBC One current affairs programme, Sunday with Laura Kuenssberg.

If Sunak and Mordaunt both reach the 100 MP threshold, Tory MPs will then vote on their favourite between 3:30pm and 5:30pm today, with results announced at 6pm.

The winner of the leadership race then visiting Kings Charles III to ask if they can royally form a new government, before the new Prime Minister officially looks to populate his front bench with either existing roles in government or to create a brand new front bench.

Jeremy Hunt has remained as Chancellor of the Exchequer after Truss’ firing of Kwasi Kwarteng two weeks ago, following the furore over the mini budget, and Grant Shapps is currently Home Secretary after the resignation of Suella Braverman. Whether they remain in place will entirely depend on the new Prime Minister.