Boris Johnson has withdrawn from the election to return to Number 10 Downing Street, saying in a statement on Sunday, “You cannot run effectively unless you have a unified party.”
Full statement, as published by Reuters news agency:
“In the last few days, I have been overwhelmed by the number of people who have suggested that I should once again run for leadership of the Conservative Party, both among the public and among friends and colleagues in Parliament.
“I was intrigued because I led our party to victory in a major election less than three years ago – and I believe I am the only one to prevent a general election right away. now.
“A general election would be an even more damaging distraction as the Government has to focus on the economic pressures facing families across the country.
“I believe I have what it takes to deliver a Conservative Party victory in 2024 – and tonight I can confirm that I have overcome the very high hurdle of 102 nominations, including one proponent. and a second, and I can make my nominations tomorrow.
“There is a very good chance that I will succeed in the election with the Conservatives – and I may actually be back in Downing Street on Friday.
“But in my final days, I sadly came to the conclusion that this was simply not the right thing to do. You cannot govern effectively unless you have a unified party in parliament.
“And although I have reached out to both Rishi and Penny – because I hope that we can come together in the national interest – sadly we have not been able to find a way to do this.
“So I fear for the best that I do not allow my nomination to continue and am committed to supporting anyone who succeeds.
“I believe I have much to offer but I fear that this is simply not the right time.”