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The premiership of Boris Johnson began on 24 July 2019 when Johnson accepted Queen Elizabeth II's invitation, at her prerogative, to form a government. It followed the resignation of Theresa May, who stood down as leader of the Conservative Party following UK Parliament's repeated rejection of her Brexit withdrawal agreement.[1]

Boris Johnson at Culham SC.jpg
Premiership of Boris Johnson
24 July 2019 – present
PremierBoris Johnson
CabinetJohnson ministry
AppointerElizabeth II
Seat10 Downing Street
Theresa May
Royal Coat of Arms of the United Kingdom (HM Government).svg
Royal Arms of the Government

The results of the leadership election were announced at an event in the Queen Elizabeth II Centre in Westminster on 23 July 2019. Johnson was declared leader with 92,153 votes, 66.4% of the total ballot. His competitor Jeremy Hunt received 46,656 votes.

Bid for Conservative leadershipEdit

Theresa May, after failing to pass her Brexit withdrawal agreement through parliament three times, announced her resignation as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom on 24 May 2019 amidst calls for her to be ousted.[2][3] Boris Johnson had already confirmed at a business event in Manchester days earlier that he would run for Conservative Party leader if May were to resign.[4]

Prior to his state visit to the United Kingdom, US president Donald Trump endorsed Johnson for party leader in an interview with The Sun, opining that he thought he "would do a very good job."[5] Boris Johnson won all five rounds of voting by MPs,[1] and entered the final vote by Conservative Party members as the clear favourite to be elected PM.[6] On 23 July, Johnson emerged victorious over his rival Jeremy Hunt with 92,153 votes, 66.4% of the total ballot, while Hunt received 46,656 votes.[7]


On the day of his announcement as Prime Minister Johnson handed the role of Chief Whip to "relative unknown" Sherwood MP Mark Spencer.[8] Spencer will serve under the additional title Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasury.

Andrew Griffith, an executive at the media conglomerate Sky, was appointed Chief Business Adviser to Number 10. Munira Mirza, who was a Deputy Mayor for Johnson throughout his mayoralty of London, was appointed Director of the Number 10 Policy Unit.[9]

Dominic Cummings, former chief of the Vote Leave campaign, was appointed a role as a senior advisor to Johnson.[10]

First 100 daysEdit

Johnson with U.S. President Donald Trump at the G7 summit in Biarritz, 25 August 2019

On 27 July 2019, Johnson gave a speech at the Science and Industry Museum in Manchester where he promised to build a high-speed rail route connecting the city to Leeds. He said the project would bring "colossal" benefits and "turbo-charge the economy".[11]

Johnson focused on strengthening the Union within his first few days in office, creating a Minister for the Union position and visiting Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

Loss of working majority, Conservative MPs and ministerial resignationsEdit

On 29 August 2019, Johnson suffered the first ministerial resignation of his premiership, when Lord Young of Cookham resigned as a government whip in the House of Lords.[12]

On 3 September 2019, Phillip Lee crossed the floor and defected to the Liberal Democrats following disagreement with Johnson's Brexit policy. This left the government with no working majority in the House of Commons.[13] Later that day, 21 Conservative MPs including former Chancellors Kenneth Clarke, Philip Hammond and Nicholas Soames, the grandson of former Conservative Party Leader Winston Churchill, had the party whip withdrawn for defying party orders and supporting an opposition motion.[14] Johnson saw his working majority reduced from 1 to minus 43.

On 5 September 2019, Johnson's brother Jo Johnson resigned from the government and announced that he would step down as an MP, describing his position as "torn between family and national interest."[15]

On 7 September 2019, Amber Rudd resigned as Secretary of State for Work and Pensions and from the Conservative Party, describing the withdrawal of the party whip from MPs on 3 September as an "assault on decency and democracy".[16][17]

Prorogation of parliamentEdit

On 28 August 2019, Johnson advised the Queen to prorogue parliament between 12 September 2019 and 14 October 2019, which was given ceremonial approval by the Queen at a Privy Council meeting.[18] The prorogation has spurred requests for a judicial review of the advice given by Johnson as the order itself, under royal prerogative powers, cannot be challenged in court.[19] As of 29 August, three court proceedings have been lodged, and one European legal proceeding has begun:

Calls for early electionEdit

On 3 September 2019, Johnson threatened to call a general election after opposition and rebel Conservative MPs successfully voted against the government to take control of the order of business with a view to preventing a no-deal exit.[24]

Despite government opposition, the bill to block a no-deal exit passed the Commons on 4 September 2019, causing Johnson to call for a general election on 15 October.[25] However, this motion was unsuccessful as it failed to command the support of two-thirds of the House as required by the Fixed-term Parliaments Act.[26] A second attempt at a motion for an early general election failed on 9 September.[27]

Foreign tripsEdit


  1. ^ a b Stewart, Heather (23 July 2019). "Boris Johnson elected new Tory leader". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 23 July 2019.
  2. ^ Picheta, Rob (25 May 2019). "Theresa May to resign as UK Prime Minister". CNN. Retrieved 26 July 2019.
  3. ^ "Theresa May resigns over Brexit: What happened?". BBC News. 24 May 2019. Retrieved 26 July 2019.
  4. ^ "Boris Johnson confirms bid for Tory leadership". BBC News. 16 May 2019. Retrieved 26 July 2019.
  5. ^ "Donald Trump says Boris Johnson would be 'excellent' Tory leader". BBC News. 1 June 2019. Retrieved 26 July 2019.
  6. ^ Mason, Rowena (23 July 2019). "Johnson on course to win Tory leadership contest". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 26 July 2019.
  7. ^ "Boris Johnson wins race to be Tory leader and PM". BBC News. 23 July 2019. Retrieved 26 July 2019.
  8. ^ Elgot, Jessica (23 July 2019). "Relative unknown Mark Spencer becomes chief whip". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 23 July 2019.
  9. ^ Syal, Rajeev; Mason, Rowena; O'Carroll, Lisa (23 July 2019). "Sky executive among Johnson's first appointments". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 23 July 2019.
  10. ^ "Who is 'career psychopath' Dominic Cummings set to join Johnson's team?". Sky News. Retrieved 2019-07-24.
  11. ^ "PM pledges new northern high-speed rail route". 2019-07-27. Retrieved 2019-07-28.
  12. ^ "Lord Young quits Tory whip over Boris Johnson's prorogue stance". Metro. 2019-08-29. Retrieved 2019-08-29.
  13. ^ "Boris Johnson loses majority after Tory MP defects during speech". The Independent. 3 September 2019. Retrieved 3 September 2019.
  14. ^ "Twenty-one Tory rebels lose party whip after backing bid to block no-deal Brexit". 4 September 2019. Retrieved 5 September 2019.
  15. ^ "PM's brother quits as Tory MP and minister". BBC News. 5 September 2019. Retrieved 5 September 2019.
  16. ^ Shipman, Tim (7 September 2019). "Exclusive: Amber Rudd resigns from cabinet and quits Tories". The Sunday Times. ISSN 0140-0460. Retrieved 7 September 2019.
  17. ^ "Amber Rudd quits cabinet and Conservative party". 2019-09-07. Retrieved 2019-09-07.
  18. ^ Young, Vicki (2019-08-28). "It's". @BBCVickiYoung. Retrieved 2019-08-28.
  19. ^ "How do you suspend Parliament?". 2019-08-28. Retrieved 2019-08-28.
  20. ^ editor, Severin Carrell Scotland (2019-08-13). "Brexit: judge fast-tracks challenge to stop Johnson forcing no deal". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 2019-08-29.
  21. ^ O'Carroll, Lisa; Carrell, Severin (2019-08-28). "Gina Miller's lawyers apply to challenge Boris Johnson plan". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 2019-08-29.
  22. ^ correspondent, Lisa O'Carroll Brexit (2019-08-29). "Boris Johnson faces third legal battle over prorogation". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 2019-08-29.
  23. ^ "MEPs plan to trigger EU rule of law investigation into Boris Johnson's government over suspension of parliament". The Independent. 2019-08-28. Retrieved 2019-08-29.
  24. ^ Rayner, Gordon; Sheridan, Danielle (September 3, 2019). "Brexit vote result: Boris Johnson demands general election after rebel MPs seize control of Commons agenda" – via
  25. ^ "MPs back bill aimed at blocking no-deal Brexit". 2019-09-04. Retrieved 2019-09-04.
  26. ^ "Johnson's call for general election rejected by MPs". 2019-09-04. Retrieved 2019-09-04.
  27. ^
British Premierships
Preceded by
Johnson Premiership