Published On: Wed, Jul 10th, 2019

Tory leader LIVE: Major savages Johnson ‘Put country’s interests first’ | Politics | News


However, Mr Johnson looks on course to become Britain’s next Prime Minister, with last night’s head-to-head debate with challenger Jeremy Hunt. Speaking on Radio 4’s Today programme, Mr Major said: “National leaders must put the interests of the country first – not themselves.” He said there was a “live risk” of Mr Johnson proroguing Parliament to force a no deal Brexit, adding: “Perhaps he is not telling the truth but he’s repeatedly refused to rule it out”.

The debate, which comes after ballot papers have been sent out to the party’s 160,000 members, was a chance for the public to compare them side by side prior to the announcement of the result on July 23.

During the clash, screened live ITV the two rivals for the Tory leadership set out their plans for Brexit and the future of the country.

Mr Johnsonvowed to get Brexit done by October 31, pledged more money for schools and police, and promised full-fibre broadband for all while Foreign Secretary Mr Hunt Mr Hunt promised to “deliver Brexit but so much more” if he won the keys to Number 10, highlighting his experience as an entrepreneur.

In total, 21,439 people voted in the Express.co.uk poll, with 13,481 – 63 percent – believing the former London Mayor has come out on top, compared with 4964 – 23 percent – favouring Mr Hunt. A further 12,994 – 14 percent – were undecided.

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9.54pm update: “Wimp”: Duncan takes potshot at Johnson over refusal to back Darroch

Boris Johnson’s failure to explictly guarantee not to fire UK Ambassador to the US Kim Darroch in the wake of a series of caustic tweets by US President Donald Trump has drawn sharp criticism from Tory MP Alan Duncan.

Mr Trump branded Mr Darroch “wacky” and “stupid” and also attacked Prime Minister Theresa May after the leaking of a confidential memo in which he criticised the US President’s “inept” administration – but during last night’s debate, Mr Johnson refused to say whether Mr Darroch would remain in his post should he become PM.

Mr Duncan said: “Am severely disappointed that Boris Johnson appears unwilling to stand up for our Ambassador to the US, our PM or our country.

“What does that tell you? Utter wimp when the crunch comes when he should be making a stand. Err… next PM???

9.38am update: Queen would have to approve request, says Major

Mr Major said Queen Elizabeth would have to approve any request to prorogue parliament.

He said: “In order to close down parliament the prime minister would have to go to her Majesty the Queen and ask for her permission to prorogue.

“If her first minister asks for that permission it is almost inconceivable that the queen will do anything other than grant it.

“She is then in the midst of a constitutional controversy that no serious politician should put the queen in the middle of.”

9.35am update: “I’ll go to court to stop Parliament’s suspension,” vows Major

Former British Prime Minister John Major would be willing to go to court to block a new leader from delivering a no-deal Brexit by suspending parliament, saying he would act to prevent the queen from being dragged into a constitutional crisis.

Boris Johnson, the favourite to become the next prime minister, has refused to rule out suspending parliament to ensure Britain leaves the European Union on October 31, with or without a deal.

Mr Major told BBC Radio 4: “If that were to happen there would be a queue of people who would seek judicial review.

“I for one would be prepared to go and seek judicial review.”

9.25am update: Major urges Johnson to put “country’s interests first”

Former Prime Minister John Major has delivered a withering verdict on Tory leadership front runner Boris Johnson, telling him he was putting his own interests in front of those of the country.

Mr Major said: “National leaders must put the interests of the country first – not themselves.”

He said there was a “live risk” of Mr Johnson proroguing Parliament to force a no deal Brexit.

He added: “Perhaps he is not telling the truth but he’s repeatedly refused to rule it out”.



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Tory leader LIVE: Major savages Johnson ‘Put country’s interests first’ | Politics | News