Coronavirus-infected Boris Johnson in isolation: Will Rishi Sunak sideline Dominic Raab if PM is forced to step down?

  • The duty to manage the country technically will fall on Dominic Raab

  • The First Secretary of State could be given the charge to run the country

  • Rishi Sunak is being seen as a people's favorite for the position of next PM of UK

With Boris Johnson testing positive for coronavirus, the one question that everyone seems to be asking is, how long can a leader of a country of close to 68 million run it from self-isolation, especially during the time of a global pandemic.

The situation is critical considering how, of all the time, it is now the country needs to have a leader at the helm of affairs. Prime of UK and his prominent stand-ins, Health Secretary Matt Hancock both are in self-isolation.

Though Prime Minister Johnson has maintained that he will continue to lead the country from the confines of his quarters at 10 Downing Street. The concerns are legitimate even though the possibilities are unlikely that Boris Johnson may be forced to step down due to the coronavirus (COVID 19).

With Boris Johnson under self-quarantine, faux pas such as UK government missing the deadline to join an EU scheme to get extra ventilators for the coronavirus crisis due to mix-up with the emails could tarnish the government image.

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Downing Street has insisted that the PM's coronavirus has been mild and he will be in a position to carry out his duties from home.

In the event that Boris Johnson's condition deteriorates the duty to manage the country technically will fall on Dominic Raab, the Foreign Secretary and First Secretary of State.

There has not been an official statement on the line of succession, in the event that Boris Johnson takes ill. While Dominic Raab is next in line, Rishi Sunak is an emerging people's favorite for the role.

Who will succeed Borish Johnson? Will Rishi Sunak be the next Prime Minister?

As First Secretary of State, Raab is officially entitled to take over the role of the next Prime Minister. Raab, however, is a controversial figure both inside and outside the UK largely due to his comments about women.

There also seems to be a general dislike for First Secretary Raab, who according to Katy Balls, Deputy political editor of the Spectator "lacks in emotional intelligence" and his colleagues "fear would struggle to rise to the step into Johnson's shoes."

According to Betfair, Rishi Sunak has the odds in his favor for the position of the Prime Minister after Boris Johnson.

"Moreover, there is little dispute that Sunak has made a very strong start. His response to the coronavirus crisis has been assured and popular - coming across as competent and on top of his brief. In that respect, he seems the perfect foil to his charismatic yet flaky boss, Boris Johnson,"
Paul Krishnamurty, political analyst for Betfair Exchange wrote.

Though just six months back, Sunak, the MP of Richmond was an unknown name, his rise to power has been enviable. And given his track record, Sunak very well could be the next prime minister of the UK.