The former Foreign Secretary has won the Tory leadership contest after six weeks of hustings, intense scrutiny and head-to-head debates. A total of 160,000 Conservative members were allowed to cast their ballot and decide who should replace Theresa May as leader of the party and the country. The result was announced just after 12pm at the Queen Elizabeth II Centre in central London following a brief speech by the chairman of the Conservative Party, Brandon Lewis MP.
Dame Cheryl Gillan MP, co-chair of the powerful 1922 Committee, announced the results, saying Mr Hunt gained 46,656 votes against Mr Johnson, who obtained 92,153 votes, with a 87.4 percent turnout and 509 rejected ballot papers.
The Brexiteer is now expected to meet the Queen tomorrow, after Mrs May’s last PMQs at noon and her meeting with the monarch, during which she will resign and put forward Mr Johnson’s name as her successor.
Later in the afternoon, Mr Johnson will likely make a statement in Downing Street before stepping into No10 for the first time as Prime Minister, achieving his life-long dream.
Mrs May has congratulated to Mr Johnson for his triumph and pledged to support him from the back benches.
She wrote on Twitter: “Many congratulations to Boris Johnson 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.
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“You will have my full support from the back benches.”
Mr Johnson has been the frontrunner of the contest since its beginning.
But the prospect of his premiership hasn’t been welcomed unanimously within Mrs May’s Cabinet.
Yesterday, Sir Alan Duncan, the Minister of State for Europe and the Americas, resigned saying he could not serve under Mr Johnson.
And, just minutes before the result was announced, Anne Milton resigned as Education Minister.
Hitting out at Mr Johnson’s “do or die” Brexit policy, Ms Milton said upon quitting she had “grave concerns about leaving the EU without a deal”.
The election of Mr Johnson has also been met with a protest staged in Westminster, with People’s Vote campaigners holding a “Let Us Be Heard” rally to demand the new leader a referendum on his Brexit plan.
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