Tory rivals say no 'coronation' for leadership frontrunner Johnson

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"The next Conservative leader, and prime minister, will have the crucial task of uniting Britain behind a new vision - not only to deliver Brexit, but to define what comes next", they said".

Deutsche Bank analysts note that in the United Kingdom, we did have the first Conservative Party leadership contest which revealed overwhelming support for Boris Johnson in his bid to become the next PM.

"If we have to get out on what is called no-deal terms, or WTO (World Trade Organization) terms, then it is our absolute responsibility to prepare for it".

Hancock added: "The nature of this contest isn't just to be the leader of the Conservative Party".

Barnier repeated that Brexit was a "lose-lose" deal for both sides but that Brussels had to respect the result of Britain's 2016 referendum on European Union membership "while limiting the consequences, which are numerous".

Possibly, I think the main thing, of course, is that the European election results clearly spooked the Conservative Party with its abysmal performance in the face of the Nigel Farage Brexit Party.

While he has agreed to take part in the BBC's debate on Tuesday, Mr Johnson will not be taking part in Sunday's debate on Channel 4, with his team reportedly having reservations about its proposed format.

Asked what people should think of a politician who had ducked out of TV debates, he said: "If you can't hold your nerve and take the heat of a leadership contest what chance under the glare of the lights in Brussels".

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The field of hopefuls to take on one of the most challenging political assignments in Europe narrowed to six on Friday after Health Secretary Matt Hancock withdrew.

Meanwhile, Johnson has a commanding lead in the first round of voting.

In order to progress through the second round of voting, candidates must win the backing of at least 33 MPs.

Writing Monday's Telegraph newspaper, BORIS JOHNSON promoted his plan to cut taxes and lead a market-driven expansion of environmental technology.

Jeremy Hunt is one of several leadership contenders to accuse Mr Johnson of "hiding away from the media" after the odds on favourite for Number 10 refused to confirm whether he would take part in televised debates scheduled for next week.

Another challenger, aid minister Rory Stewart, said Johnson had to attend the TV debates so lawmakers could see who was his best challenger.

Johnson dismissed growing criticism of his past refusal to speak to reporters and said he was ready to debate everyone left standing after Tuesday's vote. Sajid Javid received 23 votes, while Hancock and Stewart got just 20 votes and 19 votes respectively.

Moderate Conservatives have been discussing who can best challenge Boris Johnson, with some fearing the Foreign Secretary, Jeremy Hunt, who came second on Thursday, appeared to be too much of an "establishment" candidate.

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