Boris Johnson finally confirms he will stand in any Tory leadership contest
Boris Johnson has confirmed he is standing in any coming contest to lead the Conservative Party.
Speaking at the British Insurers Conference in Manchester the former Foreign Secretary confirmed he would throw his hat into the ring.
After months of rumours and a lot of jostling, it marks the first time Mr Johnson confirmed he is standing.
Leading Tories are already throwing their hat in the ring to be the next leader.
A race is expected imminently, with Theresa May telling MPs she will stand down as soon as the Withdrawal Agreement is passed by Parliament.
Asked as part of the question and answer session, Mr Johnson first said that there was no vacancy.
Pushed for an answer on if he would stand in the race to replace Theresa May he replied "of course".
Mr Johnson has long been considered the front runner to replace Mrs May, who is facing an insurgency from her own MPs over her handling of Brexit.
Declared hopefuls so far include Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt, International Development Secretary Rory Stewart, Chief Secretary to the Treasury Liz Truss, Commons Leader Andrea Leadsom and former Work and Pensions Secretary Esther McVey.
Mr Johnson resigned from the cabinet in July in protest at May's handling of the exit negotiations.
The face of the 2016 Brexit campaign, Johnson set out his pitch to the membership in a speech at the party's annual conference in October – some members queued for hours to get a seat.
He called on the party to return to its traditional values of low tax, strong policing and not to follow the policies of the left-wing Labour Party.
Betting odds indicate he is the leading candidate to replace May and has a 28 percent chance of being the next prime minister.
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