The Conservative leadership contest and the confidence of the Commons

Whoever is elected the new leader of the Conservative Party, in just over a fortnight, is widely expected to be appointed as Prime Minister immediately. But in a recent note Professor Robert Hazell and Professor Meg Russell of the Constitution Unit of University College London argue that matters are not so simple. They suggest that the Conservative leadership election raises six key constitutional questions for the winner, his party, the Palace and parliament.

The note from the Constitution Unit contains a balanced and helpful account of some of the issues that may arise. However, this paper challenges some of the claims Hazell and Russell make about the constitutional obligations of Her Majesty the Queen, the current Prime Minister and the next Prime Minister, whoever that might be.

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