The race to replace Boris Johnson as the UK’s next prime minister is hotting up.
Here are the candidates left in the Tory leadership contest following the second round of voting.
: Born in Southampton in 1980, his father was a GP and his mother ran her own pharmacy. He attended one of the top private schools in the England, Winchester College, before studying PPE at Oxford.
In parliament since 2015, he is thought to be among one of the richest MPs in the Commons, he has had a rapid rise to the upper tier of British politics – gaining nationwide recognition after being appointed Chancellor in February 2020, weeks before the Covid-19 pandemic hit.
: Chancellor of the Exchequer until July 5 when he quit in protest at Mr Johnson’s leadership.
Hedge fund manager.
He has promised to get the tax burden down once inflation is under control, saying “it is a question of when, not if”, but warned rivals “it is not credible to promise lots more spending and lower taxes”.
He views the Nato target of 2% of GDP as a “floor and not a ceiling” and notes it is set to rise to 2.5% “over time” but refuses to set “arbitrary targets”.
He has criticised “trends to erase women via the use of clumsy, gender-neutral language”.
He supports the current government policy.
: A colourful MP for Portsmouth North, Ms Mordaunt has represented the constituency since 2010. Born in Torquay, her mother died of breast cancer when she was 15.
After college, she did stints working on George W Bush’s presidential campaigns. She also appeared on reality TV diving show Splash in 2014.
: Currently trade minister, has had Cabinet jobs in the defence and international development briefs.
She was a magician’s assistant while in college before a career in public relations.
She has pledged a 50% cut in VAT on fuel. But she insists she will maintain control of the public finances.
She stands by the manifesto commitment to the Nato target but would also create a civil defence force to supplement the military.
She said: “It was Margaret Thatcher who said, ‘Every prime minister needs a Willie’. A woman like me doesn’t have one.”
She backs the current government policy: “I will crack down on the evil and barbaric smugglers that exploit vulnerable people to cross the channel illegally.”
Born in Oxford, her father was a maths professor and her mother was a nurse. Both left-wing voters, they and her family moved to Paisley, near Glasgow, when Truss was four.
As a child she was brought up on anti-Thatcher demonstrations, while she was also a Liberal Democrat for a brief period in her youth.
It was only later that she became interested in right-wing politics and the Conservative Party. She is married to husband Hugh, who she met at the 1997 Conservative Party conference and has two teenage daughters.
: Current Foreign Secretary.
Worked as an economist for Shell and Cable and Wireless and was then a deputy director for right-of-centre think tank Reform.
She has pledged to “start cutting taxes from day one”, reversing April’s rise in national insurance and promising to keep “corporation tax competitive”.
Ms Truss backs the Rwanda policy and said she has worked closely with the Home Secretary on it.
South West Norfolk.
: Born in Wimbledon to two doctors, she lived in the US and Nigeria before returning to the UK at the age of 16. She worked in McDonalds to put herself through two degrees, one in engineering and another in law.
A former vice-chair of the Conservative Party, she was elected to parliament in 2017 – rising through the ministerial ranks rapidly over the last few years.
: Resigned as equalities minister and a minister in the Levelling Up department on July 6.
Trained as an engineer, became an associate director at private bank Coutts and held a senior role with the Spectator magazine.
She is committed to reducing corporate and personal taxes but told rivals: “I will not enter into a tax bidding war over ‘my tax cuts are bigger than yours’.”
Has described the current policy as “unilateral economic disarmament” that is being pursued “without thought” for industries in the poorer parts of the UK.
A possible indication: the gender-neutral toilets at the venue for her campaign launch had paper “men” and “ladies” signs taped to the doors.
She backs the government policy.
: Saffron Walden.
: He grew up in London and Sellindge, near Ashford, before studying Theology at Bristol University. He studied for a master’s degree in Islamics at Cambridge University, before joining the army.
An MP since 2015 for Tonbridge, Edenbridge and Malling, he lives with his wife, Anissia, and two children in the constituency.
: Never held ministerial office but chairs the Commons Foreign Affairs Committee.
Served in the British Army Intelligence Corps in Iraq and Afghanistan and was an adviser to the Chief of Defence Staff.
He would cut 10p a litre off fuel duty and change tax incentives to encourage business investment.
He would increase it to 3% of GDP saying national security must come before “bean counters and spreadsheets”.
He has said he would keep the policy: “The Rwanda solution is not one anyone would have initially chosen but the reality is you cannot have rewards for criminality and illegal action.”
: Tonbridge and Malling.