Boris Johnson resignation: summary Thursday 7 July
Johnson tells ministers: no major policy changes until new leader chosen
Boris Johnson told cabinet ministers on Thursday the government would not seek to implement new policies or make major changes of direction while his Conservative Party elects a new leader, his office said. Johnson, who said earlier on Thursday he would resign, told a meeting of his cabinet ministers the government would only focus on delivering the agenda on which it was elected. "He said major fiscal decisions should be left for the next prime minister," his office said following a cabinet meeting.
Russian ambassador: Johnson's downfall is just reward for "belligerent" policy on Ukraine
Russia's ambassador to Britain believes Boris Johnson's fall from grace was a just reward for a 'belligerent' anti-Russian policy of support for Ukraine while ignoring the economic needs of the British people.
"He concentrated too much on the geopolitical situation, on Ukraine," Andrei Kelin, Russian ambassador to Britain, told Reuters in an interview in London. "He left behind very much the country, people, state of the economy, and this is what has brought this outcome. Of course, we would prefer someone who is not so antagonistic or belligerent."
"We have a duty to ensure that the country has a functioning government in the weeks ahead. Having been Secretary of State at the Communities department before, I will do my best to provide stability, good governance and accountability to Parliament at this important time".
Home Secretary Priti Patel issues statement
Home Secretary Priti Patel issued a statement shortly after Boris Johnson's annoucement outside 10 Downing Street this afternoon. "At this time my duty is to continue to lead this Great Office of State, to protect our national security, and keep the citizens of our country safe," she wrote.
Will there be a general election?
Following Boris Johnson's resignation, the process of electing a new Conservative Party leader and prime minister begins. Does that mean a general election will be called? Not exactly. The next election isn't due until January 2025. If a prime minister wants to call an early election they first need to put in a "request" to the Queen to dissolve Parliament. The Queen however, would be able to refuse the request at her own discretion.
Labour Party leader Kier Starmer has threatened to proceed with a vote of no confidence if Johnson continues in his role as PM in a caretaker basis until a replacement is found.
Johnson tells Zelenskyy UK will continue to work to end grain blockade
Outgoing PM Boris Johnson has promised Ukraine's Volodymyr Zelenskyy that he will continue to work with partners to end the grain blockade in the coming weeks, a spokesperson for Johnson said. "President Zelenskyy thanked the Prime Minister for his decisive action on Ukraine, and said the Ukrainian people were grateful for the UK's efforts," the spokesperson said following a call between the pair. "The Prime Minister finished the call by praising President Zelenskyy, saying: 'You're a hero, everybody loves you'".
"He needs to go completely. None of this nonsense about clinging on for a few months. He’s inflicted lies, fraud and chaos in the country. We’re stuck with a government which isn’t functioning in the middle of a cost of living crisis. And all of those that have been propping him up should be utterly ashamed of themselves".
Johnson failed on Brexit plan promise - Suella Braverman
Among the many grievances held against Boris Johnson was his failure to deliver the plan for Britain's departure from the European Union marked out in the 2019 manifesto on Brexit, Attorney General Suella Braverman told the BBC's Nick Robinson on BBC Radio 4 's Today programme.
Boris Johnson resignation: why did the British Prime Minister resign?
“Them’s the breaks!” That is a short, rather un-Churchillian, line from Boris Johnson’s speech on Thursday as he announced in front of Number 10 Downing Street that he would resign as Britain’s prime minister. He added, however, that he would not be leaving his position just yet, but instead would remain until a replacement was found, that most likely being in the autumn.
So, how did we get to this point?
The Kremlin says good riddance as Johnson bows to pressure
Moscow reacted to Boris Johnson's resignation by taking a dig at the beleagured former PM. "He really does not like us, and the feeling is mutual," Vladimir Putin's spokesman Dmitry Peskov said, adding that the Kremlin hope that whoever replaces Johnson is "more professional" and will "make decisions through dialogue".
"Without going into the details of conversations, I was contacted this morning and asked whether I was prepared to serve. I am now prepared to serve, I think had he asked me yesterday, I would have said no. But of course, the difference is that this Prime Minister had tended his resignation as leader of the Conservative Party but the business of government mut carry on. That's why I have decided to come back in to help my country".
Donelan hands in notice after being left in "an impossible situation"
Michelle Donelan stepped down from her position as Secretary of State for Education this morning - just 48 hours after taking over the role from Nadhim Zahawi in Tuesday's cabinet reshuffle. In her letter of resignation, Ms Donelan explained that she felt she had no option but to quit as there was no formal mechanism in place to remove Johnson: "You have put us in an impossible situation. I am deeply saddened that it has come to this, but as someone who values integrity above all else, I have no choice".
Raab ruled out
Dominic Raab will not be among those in the running to take the Conservative party leadership following Boris Johnson's resignation. Raab put himself forward as a candidate in the Tory Party leadership election in May 2019 after Theresa May stepped down but failed to obtain the required minimum number of 33 votes. He stood in for Johnson in an interim role for several weeks when the PM tested positive for coronavirus in March 2020.
What next for the UK's economy?
Boris Johnson's resignation deepens the uncertainty hanging over Britain's economy, already under strain from an inflation rate heading for double digits, the risk of a recession and Brexit.
The race to replace Johnson could take weeks or months. That would leave the world's fifth-biggest economy at risk of further drift at a time when sterling is near two-year lows against the dollar and the Bank of England is in a dilemma about raising interest rates without damaging economic activity.
Even more than many other countries, Britain is feeling the pressure of an inflation rate running at a 40-year high of 9.1%. The BoE thinks it will top 11% later this year. The International Monetary Fund said in April that Britain faced more persistent inflation, as well as slower growth, than any other major economy in 2023. Whoever replaces Johnson can only do so much to offset the impact of the surge in global energy and food prices.
Analysts at US bank Citi said they expected Conservative Party leadership contenders Priti Patel and Liz Truss, who served as Johnson's interior and foreign ministers, might call for quick tax cuts and higher spending, while Sunak and former health minister Sajid Javid were likely to be more fiscally cautious. The long-term implications of their decisions will be high. Britain's budget watchdog said on Thursday that debt could more than triple to almost 320% of GDP in 50 years' time if future governments do not tighten fiscal policy.
Britain's central bank has raised interest rates five times since December, its steepest run of hikes in 25 years, and it has signalled it will keep on increasing them, possibly by as much as half a percentage point at its next meeting in August. But the risk of a global economic slowdown has recently reduced bets by investors on that kind of big move by the BoE.
Liz Truss cuts Indonesia trip short and is heading back to the UK
Foreign Secretary Liz Truss is reported to heading back to the UK, after cutting short her G20 visit to Indonesia. She is expected to make a full statement shortly regarding Boris Johnson's resignation. On hearing the news, she said, "'The PM has made the right decision. We need calmness and unity now and to keep governing while a new leader is found".
Truss was promoted by Johnson from International Trade Secretary to Foreign Secretary, replacing Dominic Raab in September last year. A close ally of Johnson, she said earlier this week that she was 100% behind the former PM.
Stuart Andrew backs Johnson to remain as caretaker PM until the autumn
Stuart Andrew, who resigned from his post as Minister of State for Housing this week, is confident that Boris Johnson can remain as the nation's Prime Minister in a caretaker role until a replacement is found - which could be as early as the autumn. He told Sky News, "I can to be honest, we've been in this process before, when David Cameron stood down as Prime Minister and when Teresa May stood down. We have this transition period. I do think we can have a look at the timetable for the leadership elections, to see whether or not that can be progressed. But there is nothing abnormal about the Prime Minister, who is resigning, continuing until the new leader has been elected," he told Sophy Ridge. "I think it's really important that we get the functioning of government up and running again because at the moment, there are departments with no ministers. There are a number of questions that I think we need to have to carefully consider before making any rash decisions. I think we have a number of candidates who have been mentioned already, or suggested that they may run, that have a very high calibre and I look forward to hearing what their vision is, what their agenda will be and how they will face some of the serious issues facing the country, not least the cost of living problems that many people are experiencing".
Confirmed: Clark levelling up
We learned this morning from Downing Street that Greg Clark has indeed been appointed as Levelling Up Secretary.
Confirmed: Cleverly educating
The replacements continue as James Cleverly is appointed Education Secretary in a child-like merry-go-round.
Michelle Donelan resigned from the post this morning after only being appointed on Tuesday to replace Nadhim Zahawi when be became chancellor.
Cleverly was previously a minister of state at the Foreign Office and, at least, has an appropriate name for the new position.
What happens if Boris Johnson resigns? Who would be the next UK Prime Minister?
Boris Johnson has resigned as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom but will remain in the post until a new leader is found. More than two thousand members of his government including fifty-seven MPs have resigned over revelations that he lied over the appointment of MP Chris Pincher as deputy chief whip. So what happens now and who could take over?
What did Boris Johnson’s resignation speech say?
Boris Johnson thanked voters as he announced his resignation as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom this afternoon. While he admitted that he did not want to leave, he affirmed a truth in British politics: “no one is remotely indispensable.” Maite Knorr-Evans takes a closer look at what he said in his resignation speech.
Boris Johnson announces resignation: "Our future is golden"
Boris Johnson announced his resignation shortly before 12:30 on Thursday. His wife Carrie was among the crowd outside 10 Downing Street as Johnson delivered a six-minute speech.
"It is clearly now the will of the parliamentry Conservative party, that there should be a new leader of that party and therefore a new Prime Minister. I have agreed with Sir Graham Brady, the chairman of our back bench MPs, that the process of choosing that new leader should begin now," Johnson began. "Today, I have appointed a new cabinet to serve as I will until a new leader is in place. So I want to say to the millions of people who voted for us in 2019, many of them voting Conservative for the first time, thank you for that incredible mandate - the biggest Conservative majority since 1987, the biggest share of the vore since 1979. Of course I am immensely proud of the achievements of this government - from getting Brexit done to settling our relations with the continent for over half a century, recaliming the power for this country to make its own laws in parliament; getting us all through the pandemic, delivering the fastest vaccine rollout in Europe, the fastest exit from lockdown and, in the last few months, leading the West in standing up to Putin's aggression in Ukraine".
Johnson to announce resignation at 1pm local time
British PM Boris Johnson is set to "make a statement to the country" outside 10 Downing Street at around 1pm local time (BST - 8am EDT/5am PDT). Johnson has set about rebuilding his Cabinet, making Greg Clark the new Levelling Up Secretary and James Cleverly the Education Secretary. Robert Buckland will return as Welsh Secretary, and Shailesh Vara takes over as Northern Ireland Secretary.
Has Boris Johnson resigned or is he still the prime minister of the UK?
On Tuesday evening both the Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak and HealthSecretary Sajid Javid announced their resignations from the UK government. Both called into question the leadership of Boris Johnson whose government has been mired in a series of scandals since taking over the job of Prime Minister in July 2019.
The British PM saw off a vote of no confidence in early June after a damning report was issued about “Partygate”, a series of ‘gatherings’ that took place at 10 Downing Street during the covid-19 lockdown that went against not only the restrictions in place for the pandemic but also potentially the law as well.
Key ministers tells Boris Johnson to resign, reports claim
Michael Gove, a key member of Johnson's government and a significant figure in the Tory Party, has called the Prime Minister to ask him to resign, according to a report in the Daily Mail. The PM has faced renewed pressure to resign in the past 24 hours and a raft of resignations after he was found to have lied about his knowledge of the sexual assault claims against his former deputy whip Chris Pincher.
Welcome to AS USA
We'll be bringing you all the latest from the UK as PM Boris Johnson is expected to announce his resignation later today as yet another scandal clouds his government. Dozens of ministers have already handed in their resignation and many more are expected to follow.
To be able to comment you must be registered and logged in. Forgot password?