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Last Two in the Race for Conservative Leader

20th October 2005

David Cameron and David Davis will battle it out for the Tory leadership after Liam Fox was eliminated on Thursday 20th October 2005 in the final ballot of MPs.

David Cameron, who topped the poll with 90 votes, and David Davis, who was second with 57, will now go forward into the final postal ballot of the entire 300,000-strong party membership.  With 51 votes, Liam Fox drops out.

The vote seals Mr Cameron’s position as the overwhelming favourite to succeed Michael Howard as party leader.

He boosted his total by 34 compared to his first round tally of 56. 

In contrast, Davis saw his support continue to slide – dropping by 5 votes compared to his total of 62 in the first ballot.  He is now likely to face an uphill battle if he is to win the final ballot of the party members.

A YouGov poll for The Daily Telegraph of ordinary party members showed 59% wanted David Cameron as leader compared to just 15% for David Davis.

Previous leaders, William Hague and Ian Duncan-Smith, as well as former Prime Minister John Major - all now in great demand as keynote speakers for corporate events - know the challenges that lie ahead for the winner.

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