Johnson + 3
Hunt + 18
Gove + 14
– – –
Javid won 34 votes in the fourth round.
At first glance, the figures suggest that nearly all of them went to Hunt or Gove. That seems very unlikely.
We will know more in due course, but Gavin Williamson, in effect Johnson’s Chief Whip during this contest, is bound to get the blame (or the credit).
In any event, Conservative MPs have answered the gathering question of the last few rounds of this contest: risk or safety?
They have plumped, just about, for what they see, on the whole, as the less risky option for the membership stage: Hunt.
As we wrote earlier today, that ought to make life easier for the front-runner, who built modestly on his 50 per cent of the vote earlier. And the option is there for him to make Hunt his deputy if – or when – he finaly wins.
Hunt will know that, and the knowledge could make a difference to how this contest is conducted henceforth.
So, then. Lucky Hunt. If luck really came into it.