Thursday 20 June 2019

Boris Gets Step Closer To Downing Street As Rory Stewart Loses Latest Vote

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Boris Johnson, Jeremy Hunt, Michael Gove and Sajid Javid are the last men standing after surviving the third round of votes on Wednesday. The International Development Secretary was automatically kicked out of the running after receiving 27 votes – down 10 from Tuesday’s second ballot – coming bottom of the rankings. Johnson once again humiliated his competitors with 143 votes – up from 126 on Tuesday – and remains the favourite to take the keys to number 10. Hunt secured 54 – up from 46 – and Michael Gove came in third place up 10 votes to 51. Javid managed to pick up five extra votes to reach 38, having just scraped through yesterday’s ballot with the minimum requirement of 33.

Speaking after his defeat, Stewart said: ‘I am so moved and inspired by the support I have received over the last few weeks – it has given me new faith in politics, a new belief in our country. ‘I didn’t get enough MPs to believe today – but they will. I remain deeply committed to you and to this country.’ He told Sky News he was surprised that he had lost 10 votes and did not understand why adding: 

‘But something in the air must have made them sense that something was going in the other direction.’ Stewart, who would not say who he would now be backing, said he was looking forward to seeing his two children, aged two and four, adding: ‘I’ve been getting up at six in the morning and going to bed at two in the morning.’ Candidates will now face further votes, whittling them down until just two are left. 

They will then go to a postal ballot of the estimated 160,000 Tory members – beginning on June 22 – who will decide the country’s next prime minister. The MP who will take over No 10 will be announced around four weeks later, the week of July 22. After topping the ballot for the third time, Boris Johnson tweeted: ‘Thank you once again to friends and colleagues for your support in the third ballot – especially on my birthday! ‘We’ve come a long way but we have much further to go.’ Jeremy Hunt tweeted: 

‘Three times now MPs have chosen me as the person best-placed to take on Boris. ‘If I make it to the final I will put my heart & soul into giving him the contest of his life: in politics today the unexpected often happens. ‘The stakes too high to allow anyone to sail through untested.’ 

He added: ‘5 reasons why I want to be PM: 1. The best chance of getting a better Brexit deal ‘2. An entrepreneur who’ll turbocharge the economy ‘3. A reformer who’ll abolish illiteracy ‘4. Foreign Sec who’ll make Britain walk tall in the world ‘5. A campaigner who will win over young people. Come on board!’ Sajid Javid tweeted: ‘Delighted to make it through to the final day of MP voting. Grateful for the support of many excellent colleagues. We can do this! #TeamSaj #BrexitAndBeyond. 

‘Thank you @RoryStewartUK for the positive impact you have had on this campaign. You’ve injected it with real humility, authenticity, and pragmatism. ‘Like many, I look forward to seeing the contribution you will make to our party and the country in the future.’

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