The shocking but seemingly inevitable resignation of the British prime minister comes ahead of President Donald Trump’s visit to the UK.
Theresa May Out; Boris Johnson In?
De ja vu all over again? Summer is here, the British prime minister has resigned amid Brexit turmoil, and Donald Trump is headed to the United Kingdom. No, it’s not June 2016. It’s May 2019.
There are no second acts in American life, but Boris Johnson, the former foreign secretary, London mayor and Spectator editor, is hoping there are in British politics. For three years—since fumbling the premiership to Theresa May—he and his clique have sought a do-over, a second, or third, or fourth swing at the bat. On Friday, he got it.
“Back in 2016, we gave the British people a choice. Against all predictions, the British people voted to leave the European Union,” May said in front of Number 10 Downing Street Friday, resigning her office effective June 7. “I have done my best to do that. . . . I tried three times. . . . But it is now clear to me that it is in the best interests of the country for a new prime minister to lead that effort.”
The race is on. In addition to Johnson, who announced weeks ahead of her resignation that he would seek the leadership if May quit, other heavy-hitters could take a crack at it. This list includes: Michael Gove, a former staunch Johnson ally and May cabinet member and favorite of media mogul Rupert Murdoch, former foreign secretaries Dominic Raab and Jeremy Hunt, and Sajid Javid, the neoconservative home secretary. Javid would be Britain’s first prime minister of color.