Boris Johnson to contest leadership of UK Tory party

Clay Curtis
May 20, 2019

Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn said the talks with Prime Minister Theresa May's government had "gone as far as they can".

"The increasing weakness and instability of your government means there can not be confidence in securing whatever might be agreed between us", he wrote.

"We have agreed to meet to decide the timetable for the election of a new leader of the Conservative Party as soon the second reading has occurred and that will take place regardless of what the vote is on the second reading, whether it passes or whether it fails to pass".

Boris Johnson, a prominent leader of the Brexit campaign and former foreign minister, is the top choice among members of Britain's ruling Conservative Party to replace Theresa May as prime minister, according to a poll published on Friday.

If Johnson became prime minister it would cap an eventful career for the man invariably referred to simply as "Boris", known in Britain and beyond for his clownish persona and dishevelled mop of blond hair.

Labour backbencher Hilary Benn, who chairs the Brexit select committee, said news the talks were ending had "not come as a great surprise" as no progress had been made.

The former mayor of London changed his position shortly after May said she would resign if she could get her deal through, and argued that the decision was to stop Parliament from "stealing Brexit".

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Corbyn said on Friday that "without significant changes, we will continue to oppose the government's deal as we do not believe it safeguards jobs, living standards and manufacturing industry in Britain". He later told reporters there was no chance of getting even part of a Brexit deal ratified by the end of July. The party's support was unchanged from a week ago.

May has said she will resign once a Brexit deal is approved and make way for a new leader to guide the United Kingdom through the next stage in the process, which will determine the country's future relationship with the EU.

May plans to make a fourth attempt to get lawmakers' backing for Brexit terms by putting a withdrawal agreement bill to a vote in early June.

And in a statement said that he had made a bad mistake in trusting Theresa May to deliver Brexit. Publisher William Collins said the memoir - reported to have been written in a £25,000 shepherd's hut in Mr Cameron's garden - gives his views on the European Union referendum and "the future of Britain's place in the world in the light of Brexit".

It means a Conservative leadership contest is likely in the near future.

The Standard reported that the memo-summing up where agreement existed between the government and Labour over May's Brexit deal-was sent from Whitehall to Labour negotiators following Corbyn's talks with May.

The Conservative leader has previously won praise for her determination and ability to survive what has often felt like a three-year political crisis since the referendum vote.

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