Return to Transcripts main page
The Announcement And Selection Of A New British Prime Minister; The U.K. Now Stuck In A Stand Off With The Iranians Over The Seize Of Two Oil Tankers. Aired 7-8a ET
Aired July 23, 2019 - 07:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
RICHARD QUEST, CNN ANCHOR: And here they are -- here they are, Jeremy Hunt first, Boris Johnson second, coming into the arena. A very good day to you. This is the leadership announcement for the Tory Party. You're watching CNN.
ISA SOARES, CNN CORRESPONDENT: I'm Isa Soares, we're looking -- we'll find out in the next few minutes who will be Britain's 77th Prime Minister. Will it be Boris Johnson, will it be Jeremy Hunt?
We were listening there just now to Brandon Lewis who was the Chairman of the Conservative Party, talking about unity.
QUEST: The member ...
SOARES: Dame (ph) Cheryl (ph).
SOARES: Dame (ph) Cheryl (ph).
QUEST: Dame (ph) Cheryl (ph), absolutely. No, that's ...
SOARES: I think -- no it isn't. Where is she -- but there she is.
QUEST: And the announcement -- there's going to be a variety of speeches. Charles Walker, there he's speaking next.
CHARLES WALKER, CONSERVATIVE RETURNING OFFICER: Conservative Central Office for doing a fantastic job. It's done a team effort and shown the conservative family at its best.
And if could make one plea, as a backbencher, can we be kinder to the next Prime Minister than we've been to the current Prime Minister?
So, without further delay, I'm going to hand you over to the wonderful Co-Chair of the 1922 Committee, Dame Cheryl.
CHERYL GILLAN, CONSERVATIVE RETURNING OFFICER: Thank you very much Charles. On the 24th of May, the Prime Minister, the right honorable Theresa May that she would be standing down as leader of our party on the 7th of June, and over the past 46 days the 1922 Committee organized five ballots of members of Parliament and then worked with the Party Chairman and the Electoral Reform Services to present the final two candidates, so all qualifying members of the Conservative and Unionist Party could vote for our new leaders.
I want to echo Charles' thanks to Brandon, and in particular to the party board and the Party staff for all their sterling work on the hustings (ph). And also the ERS, who have conducted a very professional operation, collecting and counting the votes from home and abroad.
And also, the 1922 Executive, especially my Co-Chairman, Charles Walker, with him it's been a pleasure to work and at least we have brought equality to the top of the 1922 Committee. Gender balance is important.
And the officers of the 1922 Committee, so Geoffrey Clifton-Brown, Bob Blackman and Nigel Evans, all together here today, and our own Parliamentary staff who have given up their spare time to help conduct, what I believe, has been a very successful election.
Finally, I would like to thank all those Party members who voted and those who stood in the election, and particularly my colleagues Jeremy Hunt and Boris Johnson, who, despite the challenges of the contest, run in the glare of press comment and public scrutiny, I believe have emerged as worthy candidates for the position of leader of our country.
Now, I think you've all been waiting long enough. But, in the honored tradition, I'm going to ask my beautiful assistant to hand me the envelop for the announcement. It's called teamwork.
I, Dame Cheryl Gillan, the Joint Returning Officer for the Conservative and Unionist Party Leadership election declare that the total number of eligible electors was 159,320. The turnout in the election was 87.4 percent. The total number of ballot papers rejected was 509. And the total number of votes given to each candidate was as follows.
Jeremy Hunt, 46,656. Boris Johnson, 92,153. And therefore, I give notice that Boris Johnson is elected as the leader of the Conservative and Unionist Party.
(OFF-MIKE) BORIS JOHNSON, INCOMING BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: Thank you very much. Well, thank you very much. Good morning everybody. Thank you. Thank you everybody. Thank you Cheryl. OK, everybody, good morning. OK, wait. Thank you so much. Thank you Cheryl, thank you Charles, thank you very much Brandon for a fantastic -- fantastic, well-organized campaign. I think it did a lot of credit, as Brandon who's just said, to our party, to our values and to our ideals.
But, I want to begin by thanking my opponent, Jeremy, my common (ph) conservative (ph) and absolutely formidable campaigner and a great leader and a great politician. And Jeremy, in the course of 20 hustings and more -- I mean 20 hustings or hustings style events, it was more than 3,000 miles by the way, it was about 7,000 miles that we did crisscrossing the country.
You've been friendly, you've been good natured, you've been a front (ph) of excellent ideas, all of which I propose to steal forthwith. And above all, I want to thank our outgoing leader, Theresa May, for her extraordinary service to this Party and to this country. It was a -- a privilege ...
... it was a privilege to serve in her cabinet and to see the passion and determination that she brought to the many causes that are her legacy, from equal pay for men and women, to tackling the problems of mental health and racial discrimination in the criminal justice system.
Thank you Theresa, thank you.
And I want to thank all of you -- all of you here today, and obviously everybody in the conservative party for your hard work, for your campaigning, for your public spirit and obviously for the extraordinary honor and privilege that you have just conferred on me. And I know that there will be people around the place who will question the wisdom of your decision.
And there may even be some people here who still wonder what quite what they have done. And I would just point out to you that of course nobody, no one party; no one person has a monopoly of wisdom.
But, if you look at the history of the last 200 years of this party's existence, you will see that it is we, Conservatives, who have had the best insights, I think, into human nature and in the best insights (ph) in to how to manage the jostling sets of instincts in the human heart.
And time and again, it is to us, that the people of this country have turned to get that balance right, between the instincts to own your own house, your own home, to earn and spend your own money, to look after your own family, good instincts, proper instincts, noble instincts and the equally noble instinct to share and to give everyone a fair chance in life.
And to look after the poorest and the neediest and to build a great society, and on the hold of the last 200 years it is, we, Conservatives, who have understood best how to encourage those instincts to work together in harmony to promote the good of the whole country.
And today, at this pivotal moment in our history, we again have to reconcile two sets of instincts, two noble sets of instincts, between the deep desire for friendship and free trade and mutual support and security and defense between Britain and our European partners, and the simultaneous desire, equally deep and heartfelt for Democratic self-government in this country.
And, of course, there's something we see (ph) that they're irreconcilable and it just can't be done. And indeed, I read in my "Financial Times" this morning, devoted reader that I am, seriously, it's a great, great, great, great British brand (ph), I read in my "Financial Times" this morning that there are no incoming leader, no incoming leader has ever faced such a daunting set of circumstances it said.
JOHNSON: Well, I look at you this morning and I ask myself do you look daunted? Do you feel daunted? I don't think -- I don't think you look remotely daunted to me.
And I think that we know that we can do it and the people of the country are trusting in us to do it and we know that we will do it. And we know the mantra of the campaign that has just gone by. Incase you've forgotten it, you probably have, it was only a couple -- it is deliver Brexit, unite the country and defeat Jeremy Corbyn.
And that is what we're going to do.
We're going to defeat Jeremy Corbyn.
And I know -- I know somewhere it was already reported out that deliver, united and defeat was not the perfect acronym for an election campaign since unfortunately it spells DUD. But they forgot the final E my friends, E for energize.
And I say -- I say to all the doubters, dude, we are going to energize the country, we're going to get Brexit done on October 31st. We're going to take advantage of all the opportunities that it will bring in a new spirit of can do. And we are once again going to believe in ourselves on what we could achieve.
Like some slumbering giant, we're going to rise and ping off the (inaudible) of self doubt and negativity with better education, better infrastructure, more police, fantastic full fiber broad bands sprouting in every household. We are going to unite this amazing country and we are going to take it forward.
I thank you all very much for the incredible honor that you have just done me. I will work flat out from now on with my team that I will build I hope in the next few days to repave your confidence. But in the meantime, the campaign is over and the work begins. Thank you all very much.
QUEST: Well, we knew it was coming. We knew it was coming. It's not a surprise, the result, but a shock nonetheless. Boris Johnson, the man has wanted to be prime minister since day one.
Has written books about Churchill who speaks with rhetorical flourishes extraordinaire and said to have a (inaudible) grasp of detail but is the new conservative leader and will by default become Britain's prime minister.
SOARES: He has wanted this as Richard was saying perhaps since he was little, for 40 years or so. But as he said, the campaigning is now over. The hard work begins. And he will have a lot on his plate. But it is an overwhelming win, would you say that Richard?
QUEST: 66 percent.
QUEST: 66 percent. And Bianca Nobilo is with me. Will the Tory Party think 66.3 percent is enough to give him a mandate to prosecute a no deal Brexit or at least his policies for the foreseeable future?
BIANCA NOBILO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, lawmakers will argue that which ever they see fit. So the Boris Johnson campaign team were briefing that anything upwards of a 50 percent would be very good news for them and would provide the authority and the mandate that was needed.
They were likely being a little bit conservative. So, this 66 percent is a resounding victory for Boris Johnson. And it's what his campaign thought was needed in order for him to have any (inaudible) authority now going ahead.
Because he needs to make big decisions when it comes to reshuffling the cabinet, changing the direction of travel on Brexit and Boris Johnson also wants to prove that he's more than just a solution to Brexit. He's got a whole other agenda for the United Kingdom which he wants to influence.
So this kind of result will be substantial and (inaudible) enough for him to proceed as was expected with this huge majority of the conservative party members and move forward now in to his (inaudible) tomorrow.
QUEST: OK. Bianca, there's the -- we're waiting to see the prime minister. I was going to say (inaudible), but he's not--
QUEST: We don't really have that -- well, (inaudible) with us.
What does one call Boris in this interregnum? He's -- we don't--
SOARES: To be a leader of the conservative party, what--
PETER WESTMACOTT, FORMER BRITISH AMBASSADOR TO THE U.S.: Typical of you to start with a really tough question.
I mean he is clearly the man who will be the prime minister in two days time. But first of all it does depend on her majesty inviting him to form a government. So he's not quite prime minister elect. He's simply the leader of the conservative party and then we'll see in a couple of days time whether that is the decision that her majesty takes.
QUEST: It -- you're not (inaudible) any doubt to it. I mean there are some nice questions that constitutional people can get very hot and bothered about over whether he would have a majority in the house. The number of Tory (inaudible), his deal with DUP comes up for renewal.
QUEST: But they fact though there's going to be no constitutional issue here, is there?
WESTMACOTT: I don't think so. But you're quite right, the majority of the conservative party with or without Boris as leader in the house of cabinets is very, very thin indeed now, down to three or two.
The queen will be asked or will be advised whether or not he has the possibility of commanding a workable majority in the house incumbents. And the outgoing prime minister I imagine is going to say yes, though it's going to be difficult.
At which point her majesty will say goodbye and the next one in line will come to the palace and will be invited to form a government. So, no, I think there will not at this point be a constitutional crisis but it is not going to be easy for the incoming PM.
SOARES: A significant mandate would you say for Boris, I mean I was looking at the numbers, (inaudible) 2016 won with 68 percent of the vote. How do you see that today?
WESTMACOTT: Well, he's got -- in fact they double what his nearest (inaudible) challenger Jeremy Hunt has got. And I think Hunt did better than many conservatives would have expected. But I think we have to keep in mind this is a mandate from a conservative party.
WESTMACOTT: He doesn't have a popular mandate. It's the first time we've chosen a prime minister on the basis of votes of the conservative party at large, 159,000 people who were invited to cast a vote.
QUEST: Yes, but don't over state this, Peter because Gordon, Tony Blair took (inaudible) Brown, similar sort of thing but with the Labor Party. John -- Margaret Thatcher to John Major, this is the way it's done with the party and power going from one leader to the next.
WESTMACOTT: True. But it hasn't actually had to go to the base like that in order to get the outcome in the same way that it ha under the current Tory leadership rules. But you're right, the party and power chooses it's leader without having a general election, but this particularly process is the first time it's worked just like this.
So the mandate, the popular mandate is quite an important issue given that the biggest single task which faces him is trying to make a success of Brexit.
SOARES: Well, we might even go down to election if he can't get the deal he actually wants from Europe. We were speaking to Daniel (inaudible) from the -- who is a member of parliament of the conservative party who backed Boris.
And he was saying the most important thing for Boris Johnson in terms of internationally is to go to the United States and meet with President Trump more so than going to Europe during the summer and trying to get that deal. What do you think?
WESTMACOTT: Well, I'm sure Daniel would give top priority to that part of the relationship. I think it is key because President Trump has made very clear that Boris is his candidate. He supports him, he likes him.
And for Boris Johnson it's been very important to have a good relationship with the president despite some of the earlier disobliging things he said three years ago during the campaign. But if you're going to make a success of Brexit, that does not mean going to Washington. Brexit is about European capital and domestic politics.
QUEST: Oh, but surely. And if you can secure a deal or at least the outlines of a deal with the United States, you're greatly strengthened in your dealings to be able to stick two fingers up at Europe.
WESTMACOTT: He is not going to be in a position to negotiate any sort of trade agreement with the Americans just yet.
And secondly, even when there is a free trade agreement which will take years, an outline will not happen overnight, Richard. This is going to male minimal difference to the United Kingdom's economic prosperity and foreign trade. QUEST: Let me challenge you on this, if I may, Peter.
WESTMACOTT: Please do.
QUEST: Because you're playing the establishment rules by the rules that you know. But Donald Trump plays by a completely different set of rules and he might decide on this OK, we're going to give Boris Johnson something. We're going to screw it up for the Europeans by giving Johnson what he needs.
WESTMACOTT: It is not in the gift of the president to give him a trade deal, this is congress. Congress will be conditioned by a lot of invested interested by state legislature, by America Act, by a whole lot of agricultural and other interest in America. It is not in the president's power to give him a trade deal, even if he wants to.
SOARES: We've heard where the president stands. He has voiced his opinion regarding Boris Johnson. Do stay with us, Peter. I just want to bring you an update if you're just joining us. Theresa May has been tweeting and congratulating Boris Johnson, we're bringing that tweet up.
"Many congratulations to Boris Johnson on being elected leader of conservatives. We now need to work together to deliver a Brexit that works for the whole U.K. and to keep Jeremy Corbyn out of government. You will have my full support from the back benches."
This is Teresa May tweeting a few minutes ago. Worth reminding everyone, Teresa May is still the prime minister. She will only step down as prime minister tomorrow when she has visited the queen.
Also in the last few minutes, we have seen David Bourque has resigned. We knew that he had warned that he would resign if Boris Johnson would become prime minister. But his tweets says congratulations Boris Johnson being elected and honored to serve in cabinet. Looking forward to returning to Backbenchers tomorrow.
QUEST: Peter, the way this plays out we're focusing and fixating on Brexit quite rightly because in terms of it's a larger issue but as an international diplomatic world expert, Iran -- Iran must be his most immediate crisis to deal with.
WESTMACOTT: I think you're right. The United Kingdom is now stuck in a very significant stand-off with the Iranians over the seizure of these two tankers. The Brits, off the waters of Gibraltar, took that very big Iranian crude oil laden supertanker in application of E.U. sanctions by which, by the way, Iran is not bound but nevertheless there were sanctions against delivering oil to Syria.
The Iranians reacted furiously and they regard this as being further evidence that Britain has taken sides in the economic war that President Trump has declared against them which is a shame because the Brits have worked rather hard to try to make the nuclear deal work and to ensure that Iran gets the benefits from the nuclear deal to which it is entitled.
So there is a problem there and it does need to be resolved. How do you do this? It may be that President Trump, who has got his own reasons perhaps for managing the Iran problem, can help out because all these different elements are linked. The Iranians if they were given a bit of sanctions relief or a bit of help or a bit of cover would like to talk to America and President Trump has said Iran is an extraordinary important country, I'd like to talk to them, too. Is there something there where it can all come together and the president can help Boris Johnson? Just maybe.
SOARES: It's a fine balancing act for Boris Johnson trying to keep that nuclear deal alive, but obviously putting pressure on Iran when it comes to the Strait of Hormuz isn't it?
QUEST: We're coming to Nic Robertson in Downing Street but I need to get your view on this, because you are par excellence at reading the tea leaves. Michel Barnier on Twitter, he's the E.U.'s chief negotiator. He says we look forward to working constructively with P.M. Johnson when he takes office to facilitate the ratification of the withdrawal agreement. Here's the bit -- we are ready also to rework the agreed declaration on a new partnership in line with (inaudible) guidelines.
WESTMACOTT: Well, Michel Barnier, whom I know well, I think that's exactly what I would expect. In other words, we cannot reopen the withdrawal agreement which was signed and sealed 18 months ago, but we're happy to discuss the political declaration, which is the part of the deal which addresses the whole future relationship of the United Kingdom with the European Union. That has always been up for renegotiation.
They would love us to have Britain leaving the European Union with a deal. So there is, it's not exactly an olive branch, but there's an offer to talk about the areas where the European Union feel there is still wiggle room and I think Boris Johnson will seize that, will try and make it work. He'll talk to the French, the Germans and to Michel Barnier. Will it work or will he, in fact, leapfrog this negotiation around Theresa May's deal and go straight for no deal? That's one of the big judgments he's going to have to make in the coming weeks.
SOARES: Peter, thank you very much. Always great to have you here.
WESTMACOTT: Thank you.
SOARES: I think we can go - I think we've got Bianca Nobilo outside the (inaudible) center. Is that right? Bianca, I want to get your take on what we heard...
SOARES: ... from Boris Johnson, the leader of the Conservative Party who tomorrow will be stepping in to 10 Downing Street. What did -- what did you hear?
NOBILO: Boris Johnson started by thanking Theresa May. He also thanked his opponent, Jeremy Hunt. It wasn't by his own standards a particularly, a rhetorical speech. He didn't have too many flourishes by Boris' own bar but he did talk about his strategy for the future of the United Kingdom and he did that in typical terms. He used the acronym "dude" and said he was going to deliver Brexit. That's the first deed, unite the country, defeat Corbyn and energize Britain and that was his strategy going forward for the United Kingdom.
I can't think of a more typical display of what people see as his best parts and his worst parts, to be honest, within the Conservative Party. So now, he'll be thinking about his cabinet members, whom he's going to surround himself with key figures like the chancellor, the foreign secretary, especially given that the United Kingdom is currently embroiled in the tensions in the gulf, the minister for defense and so on.
He'll need to make those decisions tomorrow. And then other junior ministerial appointments later on in the week so that will be on his mind today but he doesn't officially become prime minister, as you mention, until tomorrow. Theresa May still has to give another performance of prime minister's questions. She'll then go to the queen to officially resign and then Boris Johnson will make his trip to Buckingham Palace to officially become prime minister. Isa?
QUEST: All right Bianca, you're at the Q.E.II Center just up the road at Whitehall. That's where we find Nic Robertson at Downing Street.
The Downing Street cat of course stays there when Theresa May moves out but the political cat has now been put well and truly amongst the pigeons with Boris Johnson's accession.
NIC ROBERTSON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: And the pigeons were already taking flight weren't they? And you just mentioned that we've seen the resignation of the justice secretary, David Gauke, within the past half an hour, a junior minister from the education ministry resigned a little earlier in the day. Perhaps we'll be hearing from others. That will be no surprise at all.
You know I think what some of us were listening for, and obviously this wasn't the forum for it but you're looking for clues in Boris Johnson dealing with some of the sort of bigger issues. The Iran issue that you were just discussing there. Was he was going to give any clues about how quickly he might go and try to visit President Trump in Washington, which was something he had earlier said might be a priority for him.
You know but it was very, very typical Boris, wasn't it? There weren't those Churchillian quotes and there weren't those Greek quotes that we might have expected but he way he set up that whole punch line and joke about "dude" starting off by deliver Brexit, unite the party of the country and defeat Jeremy Corbyn and then telling us all that was done and then delivering the energizer and the "dude." That was pure Johnson being the charismatic joker; the one that's making us laugh by then delivering up the serious message behind it with this idea of we can do it together. We're going to energize, be positive, all those things. It is what we, what we were expecting; the tone of it at least. If we were looking for a direction of travel, if we were looking to see was he leaning to Europe or was he leaning to the United States out of all of this, well he chose the word "dude" didn't he and we all know where that comes from.
SOARES: I'm doing it. And Nic, as were you talking just reading from the leader of the opposition, Jeremy Corbyn, the leader of the Labor Party, who is calling for an election saying Johnson hasn't won our - hasn't won support -- hasn't won support of our country he says. This is what he tweeted. He said, "Won the support of fewer than 100,000 unrepresented conservative party members by promising tax cuts for the richest presenting himself as the banker's friend and pushing for a damaging no-deal Brexit." Pretty much what we would expect to hear from the leader of the opposition, correct?
ROBERTSON: Well it is and look, we're going to see the Scottish nationalist as well try and use Boris Johnson and his positions and what he characterizes in terms of the capitalist that Jeremy Corbyn is talking about to advance their own names so this is what Jeremy Corbyn is doing here quite clearly as any politician would.
We're going to hear more of Jeremy Corbyn goading and challenging Boris Johnson that yes, you are prime minister but you don't have support of the country. You weren't elected by the people. They don't all love you do they? This is, of course, what we understand Boris Johnson loves. He loves to be loved. He wants to have that support. This will be the goading message from Jeremy Corbyn, as long as he's leader of the Labor Party. Trying to push and cajole Boris Johnson towards that general election. This will be the challenge for Boris Johnson to hold back and not do that despite the goading. He won't be -- Jeremy Corbyn won't be the only politician trying to goad him in that direction, we can be sure of that.
QUEST: Thank you, Nic Robertson and Downing Street. Bianca is the Q.E. II Centre. We're looking at a helicopter picture or you were just a second ago. That is Boris Johnson, the new leader and P.M. in waiting. I think that's what I'm going to go for it may not be constitutionally accurate and I'm sure that somebody...
SOARES: He is waiting. He's waiting until tomorrow. He's got less than 24 hours to become prime minister. You're looking live pictures...
QUEST: He's visiting I think at the central office, conservative central office. After that of course he'll go home and then thereafter you know, he prepares to take on government and prepares his cabinet. We should take a moment break to regroup and rethink as we look towards the new events of the day.
QUEST: The breaking news that we are following, Boris Johnson has been elected leader of the Conservative Party and therefore in time, tomorrow, will become the prime minister of the United Kingdom. Already a tweet from Donald trump, "Congratulations to Boris Johnson on becoming the new prime minister of the United Kingdom. He will be great."
SOARES: In terms of the numbers you're seeing them on the screen just as we showed you how much he won by, really 66.3 percent of the votes. Some will say it's a significant mandate for Boris Johnson of course but like Richard was saying he's not yet prime minister. He's leader of the Conservative Party. He'll become prime minister tomorrow once he visits the queen. Theresa May remains prime minister for the next 24 hours or so.
Let's go now to Nic Robertson, I believe he's outside 10 Downing Street -- Bianca Nobilo, in fact. Bianca, you I think you're still outside Q.E. II Centre but let me -- what did you take from Boris Johnson because I heard him talk about privilege, he talked about honor. But what struck me in fact before he even started speaking Bianca was Charles Walker who said, "Can we be kinder to the next prime minister than we have been to the current prime minister?"
NOBILO: Yes, that was very telling, so this was one of the people who announced the result, did make that statement asking whoever became prime minister receive a better response from the conservative MPs than Theresa May had done. And then Boris Johnson when he gave his speech following a rather providential medley of former conservative prime ministers including Winston Churchill who is Boris Johnson's personal political inspiration.
He's written a book about him. In fact, in the British press this morning across all the newspapers it was assumed that Boris Johnson was going to win and several key opinion pieces likened Boris Johnson to Churchill, his faults as well as his strengths.
And even Boris Johnson in his final "Telegraph" column because he won't be able to write when he becomes prime minister, he said that Britain needed optimism. It needed the kind of can-do spirit he said of the 1960s. Speaking about the space race and I suppose that's apt because of the astronomical challenges that Boris Johnson is going to face, Isa. He has the same parliamentary arithmetic as Theresa May. He's already had a flurry of resignations.
Another one in the last hour from the government. He's going to have to deal with all of these things while grappling with international issues like Iran, trying to forge a constructive healthy working relationship with the United States while not alienating key members of the British Parliament as well.
And then he's going to have to deal with Brexit, and he underscored in his speech, when he replied -- when he was responding to the fact that he'd won this leadership contest, reaffirming that that is his key mission, he has to deliver Brexit.
And he's already said -- he said that he's going to make the members of his cabinet sign up to a pledge that they will deliver Brexit on the 31st of October, in Boris Johnson's own words, do or die.
QUEST: Bianca, listening to Boris Johnson just -- just then though, it was full of the rhetorical flourishes of which you spoke. We can do it, the future blah, blah, blah, but this whole issues, founders on Parliamentary arithmetic and bloody minded people who are fighting their corner and won't give a quarter.
NOBILO: That's right and actually in the last couple of minutes, Richard, there was a tweet from the Head of the Democratic Unionist Party, Arlene Foster, now the DUP is critical here, because Boris Johnson, when he becomes Prime Minister, will be the head of a hung Parliament. The Conservative Party that Boris Johnson is now going to be leader of, is in a confidence and supply arrangement with the DUP, this Party from Northern Ireland, a Unionist Party.
Now, they are a key factor in delivering any type of Brexit deal. It's their number one priority, of course, as a Unionist Party, to not do anything which could compromise the unity of Britain, but it's the Brexiteers in Boris Johnson's own Party, it's their key priority to remove themselves from the E.U. through hell or high water.
So, immediately you see there display and how Boris Johnson is going to be pulled in two conflicting directions, not to mention he can't ignore the middle of his Party, the moderates, those who wanted to remain. Who either want a second referendum or would prefer to stay in the E.U., like Dominic Grieve, or who are just more moderate in their approach to Brexit and cannot get on board with Boris Johnson's declaration that he would pursue a no-deal if all other eventualities were off the table.
So, he does face this huge challenge of Brexit. And Richard, the only thing, really, that is distinguishing his situation from Theresa May's is the fact that I might be a little tougher, because now all the divisions have fully erupted within the Conservative Party.
And then, on the plus side his supporters would argue that through sheer force of personality, of vision, of enthusiasm for the Brexit project and a belief in it, that Boris Johnson might be able to succeed where Theresa May has failed. And keeping no-deal on the table is a key part of that negotiating strategy, because his supporters would argue that the E.U. never really believed that Theresa may was going to leave without a deal. We've just heard this week that the Chancellor said he was never prepared to execute that.
NIBLO: So, that will be what they're hoping. That with all those factors combined, he may be able to make some progress.
SOARES: Bianca, do stay with us. I'm brining Joey Jones. Joey, I mean, Bianca was talking about personality, I've heard the word personality a lot today. He is a divisive figure, he's got a ton of personality, but the problem hasn't shifted. The arithmetic, as Richard was saying, has not changed.
JOEY JONES, FORMER DEPUTY POLITICAL EDITOR FOR SKY NEWS: No, in terms of tone, temperament, it's going to feel wildly different. This is going to be like a hand-break turn -
SOARES: In for a wild ride are we?
JONES: Well, from Theresa May, very buttoned up, uncomfortable often in the public arena, you've got Boris Johnson who feeds off an audience, who absolutely loves the energy of a crown and of being loved, which in the Conservative Party, I think we have established, he is and among conservative members.
But translating that more widely is a huge challenge and the difficulty for him is if the wider electorate starts to feel, well this is different, and yet it's sort of the same, because he's raised expectations that he's going to be able to unlock a situation that Theresa May has been banking her head against for months, and indeed, years. If he can't follow through on that pretty rapidly, then the recriminations could be fairly venomous.
QUESTION: You see, the problem is that he may gain succor and support from the ERG and those who want a harder Brexit or at least out as quickly as possible. But, he entrenches those like Phillip Hammond and the Justice Secretary, who was sort of compromising him on the way, but now won't.
JONES: No, there is a substantial enough group as you rightly say within his own party to make serious trouble for him.
And it's hard frankly to see how even if he were to lurch towards a general election in the hope that he could change the numbers, that would substantially change the numbers within the conservative party which the parliamentary party is prefunded by.
SOARES: But he's clearly aware of that because as we just heard the last half an hour talking about bringing unity, getting back together, bringing the party together. He's aware that this is what his task has to be, is uniting the party.
JONES: And yet there are some people within certainly the parliamentary party who bluntly have made up their minds on Boris Johnson before he's even got started.
JONES: So to turn them around, well, he's got a serious job.
QUEST: There is a shift though which I think is worth us pointing out. Until now, there was a reformed remainder running the party. And her problem was the right and the ERG.
Now you've got Brexit here running the party and the country. His problem is going to be the remainders scampering his plans. It's exactly the opposite of what Teresa May faced.
JONES: Yes, he is a conviction lever. Ultimately, I reckon it was probably about not quite this time last year in the (inaudible) of last year I felt that Teresa May was clearly headed for the rocks on this. And that the only way--
JONES: -- that the ERG and those as you say conviction Brexiteers were going to be persuaded if the need to compromise was if basically one of their law had a chance at the wheel. Had an opportunity with the levers of power to show that they could get it over the line. Well, they've got the opportunity now--
QUEST: They got it now.
JONES: So we'll see whether they actually manage to do it. It's so late in the day though that positions are more deeply entrenched than they might've been had that change been made earlier.
SOARES: Well, we heard from Boris Johnson, he was saying the campaign has ended, the hard work begins. And he has quite a full plate. We talk about the cabinet, who he might surround himself with in that position after a very short break.
As you've seen in the last 45 minutes, the U.K. has a new prime minister; Boris Johnson will become prime minister tomorrow. As of right now, he becomes the leader of the conservative party. We continue our rolling coverage--
QUEST: In waiting.
SOARES: In waiting--
QUEST: In waiting.
SOARES: - as Richard likes to say it, in waiting.
SOARES: Welcome back, CNN special coverage of the announcement we heard. Britain's new prime minister is Boris Johnson.
QUEST: The results are in. He has won the race to be the Tory Party leader and thereby will in the next 24 hours be almost certainly invited by the queen to form a government.
He got 66 percent of the vote, just 1 percent less than David Cameron did when he took over. He'll move in to number ten as the new PM when Teresa May formerly resigns. And that's happening probably -- well, not probably, that's happening tomorrow.
SOARES: The choice of Mr. Johnson will shape the U.K. and a crucial part of it's history with the approach of course of Brexit and (inaudible) with Iran being really the first challengers he'll face.
[07:45:00] QUEST: Joining, Nic Robertson's with me. Nic, the way this now plays out, obviously the core part is, Boris Johnson, right now, will be thinking of who he wants in his cabinet.
ROBERTSON: And the core cabinet positions are going to be Home Secretary, Foreign Secretary and Chancellor of the Exchequer. We know that's a given, because Philip Hammond has already said, he is stepping down before Theresa May leaves office. So, those are going to be key jobs now, he doesn't have to change the Foreign Secretary, but that will be very pertinent, of course, when it comes to dealing with Iran.
Jeremy Hunt was obviously his main contender and he gave him glowing praise. He even said he'd steal some of his ideas, which kind of gave us a little hint there that maybe Boris wouldn't keep him around to actually -- for -- to allow Jeremy Hunt to execute on his own ideas, but that isn't clear. But clearly there's going to be pressure to fill those positions.
He indicated there in there in the speech that he will do this over the next couple of days. There may be more resignations, but those will be holes that he probably knew he was going to fill in the cabinet anyway.
But how does he deal with Iran? President Trump has already said that he's going to make Boris Johnson, he congratulated him and said he'll be a great Prime Minister. Will Boris Johnson choose a different track to where Theresa May and Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt were going with Iran to look to European partners for security in the Gulf, or will he turn, as Jeremy Hunt said the government wouldn't be, towards the United States and it's maximum pressure on Iran.
Javad Zarif, the Iranian Foreign Minister was challenging Boris Johnson overnight, last night saying, that Iran only wants a normal relationship with Britain, but if a war is started, if Britain starts a war it won't be them that ends it. So, very challenging rhetoric coming personally to Boris Johnson from the Iranian Foreign Minister.
So, the filling these key cabinet positions are going to be the most important thing that he can do to get the cabinet around him, that's going to shape the policies that he's going to push. And as you say, Iran is going to be probably in the immediate term, the most pressing.
SOARES: Thanks very much Nic Robertson. Joey Jones joins us now on that, Nic. We saw Boris Johnson going into the headquarters. This is really about now getting down and picking that cabinet. He said, Boris Johnson has said in the last three or four hours, that he wants to surround himself by people who think like him, who see his mission as he's been writing.
Is this the right to go about it? Surely you need to surround yourself people from both sides of the Conservative Party, from both sides of the country who think -- who want to see this sorted, but ...
JONES: Well, I was inside Downing Street when Theresa May was doing the same job that Boris Johnson is confronted with now. And she explicitly tried to balance the cabinet, but remainders and levers in prominent posts right the way down through the cabinet and indeed through the government. But, that hasn't worked.
Boris Johnson has made it clear that he cannot accept the idea of someone in the cabinet that is not -- is unwilling to contemplate no- deal, because that's a big part of his armory. That's why you've heard people like Amber Rudd, who threatened to resign from Theresa May's cabinet on the basis that she could not accept no-deal being on the table, saying, well, she's changed her mind on the basis that she wants the job in cabinet.
QUEST: Are there sufficient Brexiteers of caliber to then -- to form his cabinet?
JONES: There are sufficient Brexiteers of conviction, which may be more important in the current context, because there's not going to be very much governing going on. It's about, over the next few months, getting Brexit done.
He has had some time to think about the cabinet, longer than I think Theresa May had when she went in, but it's always a difficult job. There are people -- there are about six people who thing they're going to be Chancellor come Thursday.
QUEST: Who do you think it's going to be?
JONES: Well, I still have a gut feeling it will be Sajid Javid, but that leaves, say, five others disappointed. And with -- with salt in the wounds ...
SOARES: What -- Jeremy Hunt, you think he'll get something?
JONES: Well somebody, a couple of days ago, briefed to the incredibly well-informed political editor of "The Sun," that Boris Johnson -- that Jeremy Hunt was a bad (ph) omen (ph) and that if Boris Johnson had the opportunity kicking him out of cabinet. I think that was a crazy thing to brief. Some of the language in that was unparliamentarily, shall we say, and I think that's a dangerous route to go down.
I -- the one thing I would say though is that, look, I'm a bit skeptical about what's going to happen over the next few months. I hold my hands up, I fall and pray to the managerial defeaters if you like, but Boris Johnson will have a honeymoon over -- that will last days ...
SOARES: It's a very short honeymoon.
QUEST: What are you skeptical about?
JONES: Just bluntly, the core dynamic that's confronting him is the same as the one confronting Theresa May, and I don't see that there's a plan to get us through.
[07:50:00] SOARES: But, his message, what we heard from him, dude we are -- I say to all doubters, dude we are going to energize the country, we are going to get Brexit down. A new spirit -- he talks about a new spirit of can do to the country.
This is something that people really needed, not just the Conservative Party, but up and down the country. This energy, this optimism, that we haven't actually seen in British policy for the last three years.
JONES: Yes, I think though that some people are going to lap that up. Again, I confess that the more -- the speed -- the more that he just talks about optimism, the more depressed I find myself, because it's like, what is there inside there. And I -- I'm -- I would be delighted, genuinely delighted to be confounded. I want this deal to go through, I want us to be able to move on.
QUEST: But -- all right, but who was the biggest trouble makers for Theresa May? The one's who -- it was those of the ELG and it was those of the hardened Brexiteers who wouldn't give call (ph). Now, he's not going to have that problem, but he's going to have a problem on exactly the opposite side of the scale, with the Philip Hammonds, the Gorks (ph) who are not going -- who are going to say, we are not letting you take us.
JONES: Well, hang on one moment, because if he does get a deal with the European Union, he'll have to give a bit of ground as well. He can't just expect the European Union to roll over and do everything that he dictates to them. But if he does that, then there will be some on the ERG side who will doubtless cry betrayal.
There was some irony, and image within Downing Street they will have appreciated this, in seeing Boris Johnson clapping enthusiastically as Charles Walker said could you be nicer to the next Prime Minister, because of course, Boris Johnson has been one of the great troublemakers on the backbenches and, indeed, when he was Foreign Secretary, not really binding himself into the will of then Prime Minister. So, I image there will be a bit of a harrumph from the Downing Street (inaudible) at that.
SOARES: And before -- and before we loose you, I want to just get your take very quickly, when we hear from Boris Johnson tomorrow, that crucial speech outside 10 Downing Street, what do you think we'll hear? What's the message?
JONES: That will be less to the Party and that will be to the country. I -- you know what, I still don't think we'll get nuts and bolts and substance in that. I think we'll nuts and bolts, or I would hope we will, and a bit more detail when he comes to speak to Parliament, to the commons on Thursday and that's where his program for government -- he can expect that to be interrogated by M.P.s, not just on the opposition benches, but those skeptics on the Conservative side too.
QUEST: It's going to be a strange moment to hear the speaker call out the Prime Minister and up stands the blonde bombshell from the front benches, Boris Johnson. SOARES: and lots of booing and burrowing (ph), I'm sure, as you could expect.
JONES: I think it could be quite fun.
QUEST: That's it.
JONES: He's chose to do it, so credit to him for that, to say one of the first things he wants to do is to go to the commons (ph) and make his case.
SOARES: Joey Jones, thank you very much. Great to have you here.
QUEST: I think it's a good moment for us to take a breather. Back in a moment.
SOARES: A very warm, and it is rather warm here. Welcome back, CNN's special coverage of Britain -- the announcement of Britain's next Prime Minister is going to be Boris Johnson.
QUEST: He won the Conservative Party leadership in a landslide. He was far and away the favorite from the get-go and he got around double the number of votes, 66 percent against his competitor, which was the British Foreign Secretary.
So, the tick-tock of events, he becomes Prime Minister by virtue of being the leader of the largest Party in the House of Commons. And that means it will be tomorrow, when the current Prime Minister, Theresa May, resigns to Her Majesty, the Queen, and then goes -- and then Johnson is invited to form a government.
Here's what he said a short moment ago.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOHNSON: And I think that we know that we can do it, and that the people of this country are trusting in us to do it and we know that we will do it. And we know the mantra of the campaign that has just gone by. In case you've forgotten it, you probably have, it was (inaudible). It is deliver Brexit, unite the country and defeat Jeremy Corbyn.
And that is what we're going to do.
And I know -- I know somewhere it was already reported out that deliver, unite and defeat was not the perfect acronym for an election campaign since unfortunately it spells DUD. But they forgot the final E my friends, E for energize. And I say -- I say to all the doubters, DUDE, we are going to energize the country, we're going to get Brexit done on October 31st. We're going to take advantage of all the opportunities that it will bring in a new spirit of can do. And we are--
QUEST: So, I mean, DUDE.
QUEST: Deliver, unite, defeat which was DUD and he didn't really like that, so added E which is energize. And I think Bianca Nobilo, that's what we're going to get. We're going to get a lot of slogans.
QUEST: A lot of -- I won't say (inaudible) but lots of hyperbole.
NOBILO: Hyperboles, slogans, rhetorical flourishes and devices, anything that Churchill did basically Boris will try and do a little bit better. And one of the key compliments that people pay Boris Johnson within the conservative party is his ability to communicate.
Specially, after Teresa May who was criticized her lack of communication strategy, he lack of charisma, the fact that she didn't involve people in the decision making. That aspect of Boris Johnson's premiership will be very much sorely needed within the conservative party and appreciated by people too.
SOARES: Wonderful. Bianca Nobilo there, we'll touch base with you. Next few minutes, we of course, you have been watching CNN's breaking news coverage. The man of course will become the next prime minister of United Kingdom; it's on your screen, Boris Johnson. Richard and I will be right back.