Boris Johnson took over as Britain’ s prime minister Wednesday , promising to pull his country out of the European Union on October 31 by any means necessary.
A day after winning the leadership of his Conservative party , the former London mayor and figurehead of the 2016 Brexit campaign formally replaced Theresa May.
His ascent is the culmination of a lifelong ambition for the blond-haired politician, who delights in playing the clown but now faces an immense challenge ahead .
Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson (born 19 June 1964) is a British politician who has been Prime Minister of the United Kingdom and Leader of the Conservative Party since July 2019. He has been the Member of Parliament (MP) for Uxbridge and South Ruislip since 2015, and was the MP for Henley from 2001 to 2008. He also served as Mayor of London from 2008 to 2016, and as Foreign Secretary from 2016 to 2018. Johnson identifies as a one-nation conservativeand has been associated with both economically and socially liberal policies.
Born in New York City to wealthy upper-middle class English parents, Johnson was educated at the European School of Brussels, Ashdown House, and Eton College. He read Classics at Balliol College, Oxford, where he was elected President of the Oxford Union in 1986. He began his career in journalism at The Times but was sacked for falsifying a quotation. He later became The Daily Telegraph‘s Brussels correspondent, with his articles exerting a strong influence on growing Eurosceptic sentiment among the British right wing. He was assistant editor of the Telegraph from 1994 to 1999 and edited The Spectator from 1999 to 2005. He was elected MP for Henley in 2001, and served in the Shadow Cabinet under Conservative leaders Michael Howard and David Cameron. He largely adhered to the Conservatives’ party line but adopted a more socially liberal stance on issues like LGBT rights in parliamentary votes.
Johnson is a controversial figure within British politics and journalism. Supporters have praised him as an entertaining, humorous, and popular figure, with an appeal stretching beyond traditional Conservative voters. Conversely, he has been criticised by figures on both the left and the right, who have accused him of elitism, cronyism, dishonesty, laziness, and using racist and homophobic language. Johnson is the subject of several biographies and a number of fictionalised portrayals.
Johnson has promised to deliver Brexit in three months’ time but faces opposition in Brussels and has only a wafer – thin majority in the British parliament.
Johnson is expected to swiftly announce his new cabinet , and his first appointment proved predictably contentious .
He named as a top adviser Dominic Cummings, a combative character who helped lead the victorious “ Vote Leave ” campaign during the 2016 EU referendum .
May resigned after failing to get her plan for leaving the EU through parliament , forcing her to twice delay Britain’ s departure date.
Johnson has vowed to renegotiate her deal or take Britain out of the bloc at the next deadline, October 31 , without any agreement with Brussels .
But the EU refuses to reopen the text , while some of his own MPs have said they might even bring down the government rather than accept a damaging “ no- deal ” exit.