What Happens Next After U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson Resigns

Boris Johnson has resigned as Conservative leader and will step down as U.K. Prime Minister on Thursday after more than 50 members of Parliament (MPs) from his Conservative Party dramatically resigned in protest against his leadership.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson walks back inside after reading a statement outside 10 Downing Street in London, formally resigning as Conservative Party leader, July 7, 2022. Johnson said Thursday he will remain as British prime minister while a leadership contest is held to choose his successor.

(Photo Credit: Frank Augstein/AP Photo Source: abcnews.go.com)

This is what could happen next.

The Conservative Party will elect a new leader who will automatically become Prime Minister. They don’t need to hold a general election.

However, this could take some time.

The Conservative Party leadership election is divided into two parts. The first phase is a series of elimination rounds voted by Conservative MPs until there are two contenders left.

The process took about two weeks during the 2019 leadership election, whether it could take longer this time depending on how many candidates run. The second phase is to vote on the final two candidates by Conservative Party members across the country. It took Johnson around a month to take the place of Jeremy Hunt in 2019.

With expectation of a contest, party leadership candidates have been campaigning behind the scenes in Westminster for months.

Although the contest has started, the country still needs a Prime Minister to lead the country. Johnson said he wants to stay in charge as caretaker prime minister until the Conservative Party conference in October.

But some Conservatives have spoken out against the idea. Former Education Minister Nick Gibb said that in addition to resigning from the party leadership, he would need resign as Prime Minister.

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