Boris an­nounce­ment shocks West­min­ster

Uxbridge MP rules him­self out of prime min­is­ter role

Harefield Gazette - - NEWS - By Alexan­der Ballinger & Amita Joshi ed­i­to­ri­aluxbridge@trin­i­tymir­

UXBRIDGE MP Boris John­son made a shock an­nounce­ment that he will not run in the Tory party lead­er­ship con­test to be­come Bri­tain’s next prime min­is­ter, in a move that has as­ton­ished West­min­ster.

In a speech on Thurs­day June 30, he an­nounced: “Hav­ing con­sulted col­leagues and in view of the cir­cum­stances in par­lia­ment, I have con­cluded that per­son can­not be me.

“My role will be to give ev­ery pos­si­ble sup­port to the next Con­ser­va­tive ad­min­is­tra­tion, to make sure we prop­erly fill the man­date of the peo­ple that was de­liv­ered at the ref­er­en­dum and to cham­pion the agenda I be­lieve in.”

De­spite the book­ies tip­ping Boris as the favourite, the for­mer Mayor of London is now no longer in the race, a ru­mour that had been men­tioned ear­lier in the morn­ing, be­fore be­ing quickly dis­missed.

A key fig­ure in the Leave cam­paign dur­ing the Euro­pean Union, the Uxbridge and South Ruis­lip MP was seen by many po­lit­i­cal fig­ures to be the nat­u­ral suc­ces­sor af­ter the coun­try voted to leave in the his­tor­i­cal ref­er­en­dum.

The of­fi­cial list has been an­nounced for the Con­ser­va­tive party lead­er­ship by chair­man Gra­ham Brady of the 1922 com­mit­tee, in­clud­ing Theresa May, Michael Gove, Stephen Crabb, Liam Fox and An­drea Lead­som.

John­son’s back­ing down came shortly af­ter his close Brexit ally Gove made a sur­prise an­nounce­ment that he would stand for the party lead­er­ship, say­ing John­son ‘can­not pro­vide the lead­er­ship or build the task ahead’.

Home sec­re­tary Theresa May is now the book­ies favourite to lead the coun­try, fol­lowed by en­ergy min­is­ter An­drea Lead­som.

John­son and Gove were not the only two Brex­iters to shock the world of pol­i­tics in the fall­out from the vote for Bri­tain to leave the Euro­pean Union on June 23.

UKIP leader and Mem­ber of Euro­pean Par­lia­ment Nigel Farage sur­prised the coun­try on Mon­day when he an­nounced he would be step­ping down as head of his party.

He said: “I have never been, and I have never wanted to be, a ca­reer politi­cian. My aim in be­ing in pol­i­tics was to get Bri­tain out of the Euro­pean Union. That is what we voted for in that ref­er­en­dum two weeks ago, and that is why I now feel that I have done my bit, that I couldn’t pos­si­bly achieve more than we man­aged to get in that ref­er­en­dum, so I feel that it is right that I should now stand aside as leader of UKIP.”

Vot­ing on the new Con­ser­va­tive leader and Prime Min­is­ter opened yes­ter­day (Tues­day) and can­di­dates will be nar­rowed down to two by Tory MPs be­fore the wider party mem­ber­ship gets a chance to choose.

n OUT OF THE RACE: Boris John­son

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