Politics

#Ready4Rishi: Sunak launched his election campaign with a hashtag

Rishi Sunak has kicked off his bid to be Conservative leader and prime minister asking if you are #Ready4Rishi.

Rishi Sunak's #Ready4Rishi campaign launched on Friday, the day after Boris Johnson resigned. Image: RishiSunak/Twitter

Are you #Ready4Rishi? Sunak’s resignation signalled the end of Boris Johnson’s premiership, now the former chancellor has kicked off the race to replace him.

Sunak launched his bid to be the new Conservative leader and prime minister with a suspiciously snazzy campaign video charting his rise to political prominence and his very own hashtag. And we all know that hashtags are watertight against being co-opted and used out of context. Right, Rishi?

Earlier in the week, Sunak revealed a rift with Johnson in his resignation letter, saying “I have always tried to compromise in order to deliver the things you want to achieve. On those occasions where I have disagreed with you privately, I have supported you publicly.”

Sunak’s almost three-minute campaign video made a concerted effort to differentiate himself from Johnson’s way of running things, starting with a whistle-stop tour through his childhood and ending with a call of unity far from the division shown by the Conservative Party this week.

“I’ve told you a bit about my story,” he says in the video. “But I’m running to be our next prime minister because it’s your stories that matter most.”

Social media users weren’t shy in sharing their stories — and opinions — on #Ready4Rishi.

“Dear Plebs,” wrote one user. “Let’s restore trust by you all forgetting my wife avoids tax while I raised yours… Don’t mention I broke the law and mislead everyone about it… Oh & forget I have enabled the most corrupt Government in modern times… Signed Super Rishi (Non Dom) #Ready4Rishi”

Another was more straightforward: “#Ready4Rishi you’ve got to be joking, empathy free rich kid!” wrote Matthew Payne. “‘Whatever it takes’ unless you were one of 3 million+ self employed. Eat out to kill off,that went well! £4.3 billion in Covid fraud swept under carpet, and written off. Chancer of The Exchequer, when people needed help!”

A third broke down some of the campaign slogans in withering style. “‘Restore trust’ – you stood by and let Johnson break it. ‘Rebuild the economy’ – you’ve been in charge of it for the last 3 years…you broke it. A useless phoney in a smart suit, is no different to the useless phoney in a scruffy one, the one he wants to replace #ready4rishi

Television presenter Max Rushden and newsreader Dan Walker were among those who pointed out how quickly Sunak had got his video together. Walker quipped: “Quick turnaround.”

He did have his supporters though. Backbench Conservative MPs including Angela Richardson, former chief whip Mark Harper.

Support the Big Issue

For over 30 years, the Big Issue has been committed to ending poverty in the UK. In 2024, our work is needed more than ever. Find out how you can support the Big Issue today.
Vendor martin Hawes

Recommended for you

View all
A Czech billionaire is buying the Royal Mail. What's next for the iconic British institution?
Jobs with the Royal Mail are still prized, so why shouldn't others be in the UK service industry? Image credit: Maureen McLean/Shutterstock
Royal Mail

A Czech billionaire is buying the Royal Mail. What's next for the iconic British institution?

Dignified quality of life or gaslighting? Tories' 'triple lock plus' pension pledge divides voters
pensioner
General election 2024

Dignified quality of life or gaslighting? Tories' 'triple lock plus' pension pledge divides voters

National service for Gen Z, tax breaks for boomers: Why 'desperate' Tories are chasing older voters
General Election 2024

National service for Gen Z, tax breaks for boomers: Why 'desperate' Tories are chasing older voters

'Get a grip' and act on reality, not prejudice, MP Liam Fox tells his Tory colleagues
Liam Fox
Politics

'Get a grip' and act on reality, not prejudice, MP Liam Fox tells his Tory colleagues

Most Popular

Read All
Renters pay their landlords' buy-to-let mortgages, so they should get a share of the profits
Renters: A mortgage lender's window advertising buy-to-let products
1.

Renters pay their landlords' buy-to-let mortgages, so they should get a share of the profits

Exclusive: Disabled people are 'set up to fail' by the DWP in target-driven disability benefits system, whistleblowers reveal
Pound coins on a piece of paper with disability living allowancve
2.

Exclusive: Disabled people are 'set up to fail' by the DWP in target-driven disability benefits system, whistleblowers reveal

Cost of living payment 2024: Where to get help now the scheme is over
next dwp cost of living payment 2023
3.

Cost of living payment 2024: Where to get help now the scheme is over

Strike dates 2023: From train drivers to NHS doctors, here are the dates to know
4.

Strike dates 2023: From train drivers to NHS doctors, here are the dates to know