Michael Gove has stunned Westminster by announcing he will stand to become the next Tory leader.
In a statement the Leave campaigner said:
I have come, reluctantly, to the conclusion that Boris cannot provide the leadership or build the team for the task ahead.
I have therefore, decided to put my name forward for the leadership. I want there to be an open and positive debate about the path the country will now take. Whatever the verdict of that debate I will respect it. In the next few days I will lay out my plan for the United Kingdom which I hope can provide unity and change.
That howl you hear is Tory supporters around the country watching their party be torn apart.
Gove's bid, a remarkable strike against his fellow Leave campaigner Boris Johnson, is all the more interesting when you look at his words to Sky News in the EU referendum debates 27 days ago - when he ruled himself out of any potential contest to be the next leader.
The one thing I can tell you is there are lots of talented people who could be Prime Minister after David Cameron but count me out.
He laughed at the prospect of challenging Boris at the time, saying:
The thing I recommend is whatever posters you put up on your wall, do not put one up of me.
I'm not the sort of person you want to have when you wake up on your bedroom wall, I'll tell you that.
A week is a long time in politics. 27 days is almost a lifetime.
More from the Independent: EU referendum: Michael Gove rules himself out of leadership contest during Brexit debate