Johnson faces Hunt in battle to be British PM

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(London) – Boris Johnson will face Jeremy Hunt in a run-off to become Britain´s next prime minister after a final ballot of MPs, with the winner tasked with guiding the country through Brexit.

In the fifth ballot of MPs in the governing Conservative Party, former London mayor Johnson won 160 of the 313 votes, while Foreign Secretary Hunt earned 77.

Johnson said he was “deeply honoured” to have such emphatic backing from his colleagues, having won more than half the votes.

“I look forward to getting out across the UK and to set out my plan to deliver Brexit, unite our country, and create a brighter future for all of us,” he tweeted.

Environment Secretary Michael Gove, who with Johnson had led the successful 2016 referendum campaign to leave the European Union, was narrowly eliminated after winning 75 votes.

The centre-right party´s 160,000 grassroots members will now pick their new leader from the final two, who will then take over from Theresa May as prime minister in late July.

Both Johnson and Hunt have promised to take Britain out of the EU as quickly as possible, with the current exit date — after two delays — set for October 31.

Both say they want to renegotiate the deal May has already struck with Brussels — which parliament has rejected three times — but are prepared to walk away if necessary.

However, the EU has repeatedly said it will not change the text and the tough talk of “no deal”, particularly from Johnson, has sparked frustration across the bloc.