Update 2: Boris Johnson has reportedly told his fellow Tories that he won't call for a general election.
- BORIS JOHNSON TELLS TORIES HE'S NOT PLANNING GENERAL ELECTION
Some suspect Johnson might call an election to show that he has a 'popular mandate' to pursue a 'no deal' Brexit on Oct. 31. Then again, Theresa May used a similar tactic, only for it to backfire.
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Update: President Trump has tweeted his congratulations to Johnson. Trump has professed a liking for Johnson, and has promised to swiftly strike a new US-UK trade pact with the new leader.
Congratulations to Boris Johnson on becoming the new Prime Minister of the United Kingdom. He will be great!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 23, 2019
And Theresa May tweeted her own congratulations.
Many congratulations to @BorisJohnson on being elected leader of @Conservatives - we now need to work together to deliver a Brexit that works for the whole UK and to keep Jeremy Corbyn out of government. You will have my full support from the back benches.— Theresa May (@theresa_may) July 23, 2019
Michel Barnier, the EU's top Brexit negotiator, tweeted his congratulations, and said he looks forward to working with Johnson to "facilitate ratification" of the withdrawal agreement, and added that he would be ready to rework the accompanying political declaration.
We look forward to working constructively w/ PM @BorisJohnson when he takes office, to facilitate the ratification of the Withdrawal Agreement and achieve an orderly #Brexit. We are ready also to rework the agreed Declaration on a new partnership in line with #EUCO guidelines.— Michel Barnier (@MichelBarnier) July 23, 2019
Even the foreign minister of Iran sent his congratulations to BoJo, and said Iran "does not seek confrontation" (the two countries are engaged in a diplomatic spat over detained oil tankers.
The May govt's seizure of Iranian oil at behest of US is piracy, pure & simple.— Javad Zarif (@JZarif) July 23, 2019
I congratulate my former counterpart, @BorisJohnson on becoming UK PM.
Iran does not seek confrontation. But we have 1500 miles of Persian Gulf coastline.These are our waters & we will protect them pic.twitter.com/svEqmEHQBM
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Update: Boris Johnson wins by a wide margin of more than 2-1 (he won 66% of the vote, a clear mandate from his party.).
The count was:
- Hunt: 46,656
- Johnson: 92,153
- Turnout: 87.4% (there were just under 160,000 eligible Tory voters)
The pound has rallied back to unchanged on the day. BoJo will be sworn in as PM on Wednesday afternoon after May holds her final PMQ, delivers a brief speech then hand-delivers her resignation to the Queen. Johnson is expected to deliver a speech of his own after becoming prime minister.
While Johnson's victory was widely expected, he will face challenges right out the gate, including rebuilding the cabinet with just 100 days until the Oct. 31 "Brexit Day".
Just before BoJo's victory was announced, another of May's cabinet members resigned. David Gauke, May's Justice Secretary, has stepped down, as has Anne Milton, the education minister. Yesterday, Alan Duncan, a foreign office minister, resigned and tried to call a vote to test support for Johnson's government, only to be blocked by Speaker John Bercow. Philip Hammond, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, is expected to quit on Wednesday before Johnson can fire him.
Congratulations @BorisJohnson on being elected as Leader of @Conservatives and PM @10DowningStreet. An honour to serve in Cabinet @MoJGovUK, @DWP and @hmtreasury under @theresa_may. Looking forward to returning to backbenches tomorrow, serving people of South West Hertfordshire.— David Gauke (@DavidGauke) July 23, 2019
After taking office, Johnson is expected to instate his own team in the senior positions, with most of May's more moderate cabinet officials expected to be shown the door, to be replaced with a bevy of ERG-aligned MPs.
Johnson has promised to deliver Brexit "do or die" on Oct. 31, as Brussels has signaled it will not accept the changes he proposed to the withdrawal agreement.
But he will face his own unique challenges. BoJo's majority is expected to shrink to just one vote next month if the conservatives lose the Brecon and Radnorshire by-election. Tories are bracing for the possibility that Johnson might call for a snap election in the fall to seek a new public mandate for his Brexit strategy. His preferred scenario would be to win a deal with the EU that he could also sell to parliament, but the odds of that are dimming by the day. Looking ahead, Johnson is expected to start announcing senior posts immediately, and much attention will be paid to who Johnson chooses to lead negotiations with Brussels (remember, President Trump urged Johnson to send Nigel Farage to Brussels).
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After weeks of campaigning and some unexpected twists, the Tories are set to announce the winner of their leadership contest
With the announcement imminent, cable is slowly rebounding.
The victor will be sworn in as the new PM on Wednesday.
Boris Johnson has a wide lead in the polls over Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs Jeremy Hunt, and though his campaign has been marked by some unexpected scandals, he's still widely favored to win. But a number of senior figures in Theresa May's government have resigned their posts, and on Monday, Sir Alan Duncan quit his Foreign Office role and called for MPs to have a vote before this on whether they actually will support Johnson forming a government. However, his call for a vote was blocked by the Commons speaker.
According to online bookmakers, Boris Johnson is 66/1 on to win the (and 33/1 on to be the next PM), while Jeremy Hunt is 25/1 against. Odds also favor the UK staying in the EU past the Oct. 31 deadline, and that the UK will leave with a deal.
Watch live coverage of the leadership contest.