The Conservative party members chose their new leader and possibly, if everything goes well for him today, our new Prime Minister. It was always going to be a man as the longlist had been cut down to two men. Boris Johnson and Jeremy Hunt were the only two left in the race as at Tuesday morning and with two thirds of the votes the winner was Boris Johnson
The announcement was made at the QE2 Conference Centre in London and he will step up to his new position today after Theresa May takes her last PMQ session at the Houses of Parliament.
Many members of the Cabinet have already stepped down or threatened to step down if Boris Johnson was elected leader.
Justice Secretary David Gauke, International Development Minister Rory Stewart and the Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond have all threatened. Sir Alan Duncan the Foreign Office Minister resigned on Monday.
In his victory speech to the members of the Conservative Party who had voted for him, Boris Johnson said that his goals are to Deliver Unite and Defeat, admitting that the acronym was DUD ‘not the perfect acronym for an election campaign’. He explained that that they had forgotten the final E which is for energise saying “And I say to all the country – Dude! We are going to energise the country. We’re going to get Brexit done on October 31st, we’re going to take advantage of all the opportunities that it will bring in a new spirit of can do. And we are once again going to believe in ourselves and what we can achieve.
“And like some slumbering giant we are going to rise and ping off the guy ropes of self doubt and negativity with better education, better infrastructure, more police, fantastic full broadband sprouting in every household. We are going to unite this amazing country and we are going to take it forward.
“And I thank you all very much for the incredible honour that you have just done me. I will work flat out from now on with my team that I will build, I hope in the next few day to repay your confidence. But in the meantime, the campaign is over and the work begins. Thank you all very much.”
And here are our five local MPs with their views on the appointment of Johnson as PM and what might happen now.
A cross party group has raised an action in the Court of Session to prevent the next Prime Minister proroguing parliament (which means Westminster would be suspended). This would mean that the UK could not then leave the EU without a deal. Mr Johnson refused to rule that out during his leadership campaign. The action demands that the court declares that the Prime Minister cannot ask the Queen to suspend parliament and do so on the grounds of constitutional law.
Jo Swinson the newly elected leader of the Liberal Democrats, Joanna Cherry QC MP for Edinburgh South West, Jolyon Maugham QC and Edinburgh South MP Ian Murray are all party to the action. Ms Swinson announced yesterday in her victory speech that she would do everything in her power to stop Brexit.
Mr Maugham led a consortium of MPs, MSPs and MEPs at the end of last year in an action in the Court of Session which decided that parliament could revoke Article 50 as one way of simply stopping Brexit.
Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson congratulated Boris Johnson on winning the election to become UK Conservative leader. She said : “I congratulate Boris Johnson on his victory and offer commiserations to Jeremy Hunt.
“This was a keenly fought leadership campaign and the Conservative party can be proud of the manner in which it has been conducted.
“Mr Johnson takes over the leadership at an incredibly challenging time for our country, and he has an enormous task ahead of him.
“My priority as Scottish Conservative leader is to ensure that he will deliver for Scotland within the UK, stop Nicola Sturgeon’s efforts to take us back to a second independence referendum, and prevent Jeremy Corbyn from getting to Number 10.”
In a series of tweets the First Minister congratulated Boris Johnson but said that his appointment might accelerate Scotland’s independence : “Congratulations to Boris Johnson on his election as leader of the Conservative Party. Despite our many differences, I will do all I can to develop a way of working with him that respects and protects Scotland’s views and interests.
“However, it would be hypocritical not to be frank about the profound concerns I have at the prospect of his premiership. I am certain that the vast majority of people of Scotland would not have chosen to hand the keys of No 10 to someone with his views and track record.
“Most immediately I, @scotgov and @theSNP will work with others to do everything we can to block his plan for a no deal Brexit – which would do catastrophic harm to Scotland. And I will continue to advance the preparations to give Scotland the right to choose our own future through independence, rather than having a future that we don’t want imposed on us by Boris Johnson and the Tories. That is now more important than ever.”
Green Party Co-Convener, Patrick Harvie MSP said:“The people of Scotland didn’t vote for Brexit, we didn’t vote for a Tory government and I’m certain that given the choice we wouldn’t have voted for Boris Johnson either.
“Scotland needs a route out of Boris’ Brexit Britain, and while we already have a firm mandate to hold a referendum, Johnson’s elevation to the office of Prime Minister on the back of bluff and bluster is hugely concerning and reinforces the need to hold this vote urgently.
“Brexit is already having a hugely detrimental impact with EU citizens in particular feeling under attack as rhetoric from the likes of Johnson and co has been relentless over the last three years.
“In the face of this utter shambles it has never been more important that Scotland retakes our place as an independent European nation.”
Scottish Labour leader Richard Leonard said: “Boris Johnson represents a dangerous form of English nationalism, and the one certainty of his election as leader of the Tory party is more uncertainty for the future of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
“Johnson some time ago abandoned the unionist tradition of the Conservative and Unionist party. The Tory Party he now leads is a real and present danger to Scotland’s place in the UK. “A no-deal Brexit led by Boris Johnson spells disaster for our country, and it is unforgivable for the Scottish Tories to back him. “Only Scottish Labour is standing up for Scotland’s place in the UK, for the UK’s place in Europe and against a harmful no deal Brexit.”
Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie said:“When faced with a choice of Boris Johnson or Jeremy Corbyn it’s pretty obvious that Jo Swinson should be in charge.”
Liberal Democrat Leader Jo Swinson said: “Boris Johnson has finally got his hands on the keys to Number 10, but he has shown time and time again that he isn’t fit to be the Prime Minister of our country.
“Whether it is throwing people under the bus or writing a lie on the side of one: Britain deserves better than Boris Johnson.
“If we want to defeat nationalism and populism, we need to give people an alternative vision for our country. It’s the Liberal Democrats who can lead the renewal our country needs.”