Boris Johnson takes over as Prime Minister from Theresa May

World Today

Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II welcomes newly elected leader of the Conservative party Boris Johnson during an audience at Buckingham Palace, London, Wednesday July 24, 2019, where she invited him to become Prime Minister and form a new government. (Victoria Jones/Pool via AP)

The U.K. has a new Prime Minister with a daring plan to have Britain out of the European Union by the autumn.

He’s the former foreign secretary, Boris Johnson, who said he’ll take the country out ‘deal or no deal’ if the EU refuses to talk.

Richard Bestic reports.

On the road from securing Royal approval, the U.K.’s new Prime Minister begins what could be a turbulent time in office.

With a comfortable margin of support from his political Party’s membership, Premier Boris Johnson spoke for the first time to the British people on the steps of No. 10 Downing Street.

His messages focus on an image of Brexit’s sunny uplands.

 “The doubters, the doomsters, the gloomsters. They are going to get it wrong again. The people who bet against Britain are going to lose their shirts because we’re going to restore trust in our democracy. And we’re going to fulfill the repeated promises of Parliament to the people. And come out of the EU on October 31. No ifs or buts,” Johnson said.

Johnson though has just a hundred days to come up with a solution to a problem that has confounded all Europe for three years.

And there are no easy options if the country is to leave the European Union by the autumn as the new man in the U.K.’s top job insists.

The EU, unmoved by appeals for changes to a Withdrawal Agreement that took 18 months to negotiate.

And the U.K. Parliament refusing any suggestion of a ‘no deal’ Brexit.

With an apparently ever-shrinking majority, Johnson may be tempted by the attractions of an early general election, seeking a majority he desperately needs to force a ‘no deal’ Brexit through Parliament. It would though be a hugely high-risk gamble.

It was just such a gamble his immediate predecessor, Theresa May tried and lost.

On her way out, May given a rare Parliamentary standing ovation after three years and 11 days in office, repeatedly trying and failing to get her Brexit deal through Parliament.

Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond among a significant number of ministers who have also left saying they couldn’t bring themselves to serve in a Johnson government.

So, everything’s changed and nothing’s changed.  A new U.K. Prime Minister, certainly, with a dramatically different style.   But the same hurdles of the last three years and importantly the same Parliamentary arithmetic.  Just a lot less time till the next deadline comes along.