LONDON (Fwrd Axis) — Boris Johnson ruled himself of running for the Conservative Party leadership, ending brief speculation about a possible return to become British Prime Minister after he was ousted from the job three months ago.
In a Sunday statement, Johnson claimed he had strong support to seek another run but added that running for a return to his old job was not the right thing to do.
“I believe I am well placed to deliver a Conservative victory in 2024 — and tonight I can confirm that I have cleared the very high hurdle of 102 nominations, including a proposer and a seconder, and I could put my nomination in tomorrow,” Johnson said. “But in the course of the last days, I have sadly come to the conclusion that this would simply not be the right thing to do. You can’t govern effectively unless you have a united party in Parliament.”
“There is a very good chance that I would be successful in the election with Conservative Party members — and that I could indeed be back in Downing Street on Friday,” he added.
Johnson’s statement leaves former treasury chief Rishi Sunak as the strong odds-on favorite to become Britain’s next prime minister and could win the spot as early as Monday.
“I am afraid the best thing is that I do not allow my nomination to go forward and commit my support to whoever succeeds,” Johnson said. “I believe I have much to offer, but I am afraid that this is simply not the right time.”
The news comes after Liz Truss announced her resignation from the job after just 45 days after a disastrous era led the British Pound to plummet and her government in chaos.
“I recognize that given the situation I cannot deliver the mandate on which I was elected by the Conservative Party,” Truss said Thursday at No. 10 Downing Street. “I have therefore spoken to his majesty the king to notify him that I am resigning as leader of the Conservative Party.”
President Joe Biden thanked Truss for her role in defending Ukraine against Russia and vowed the United States and the United Kingdom will remain allies moving forward.
The United States and the United Kingdom are strong Allies and enduring friends — and that fact will never change,” Biden said in a statement. “I thank Prime Minister Liz Truss for her partnership on a range of issues including holding Russia accountable for its war against Ukraine. We will continue our close cooperation with the U.K. government as we work together to meet the global challenges our nations face.”