The latest on Boris Johnson's resignation

By Tara John, Aditi Sangal, Hafsa Khalil, Ivana Kottasová and Adrienne Vogt, CNN

Updated 1:26 p.m. ET, July 7, 2022
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3:54 a.m. ET, July 7, 2022

Johnson hit by a morning of resignations

From CNN’s Lauren Kent, Nicola Careem, Luke McGee and Manveena Suri.

Boris Johnson was rocked by more resignations on Thursday morning as a growing number of ruling Conservative Party lawmakers attempt to force the UK Prime Minister out of 10 Downing Street.

Here are the latest resignations:

Brandon Lewis: UK’s Northern Ireland Secretary became the fourth cabinet member to leave their post. In Brandon Lewis's letter to the Prime Minister, he said a “decent and responsible government relies on honesty, integrity, and mutual respect -- it is a matter of profound personal regret that I must leave government as I no longer believe those values are being upheld.”

Helen Whately: In her resignation letter, UK’s Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury said she had argued for Johnson to continue in recent months, but “there are only so many times you can apologize and move on.”

Damian Hinds: UK’s Security Minister Damian Hinds announced on Thursday that he has resigned from his role in Johnson's government. “It shouldn’t take the resignation of dozens of colleagues, but for our country, and trust in our democracy, we must have a change of leadership,” he tweeted, attaching his resignation letter in the post. 

George Freeman: He resigned from his post as UK’s Minister for Science, Research and Innovation, according to UK’s national press agency, PA Media, on Thursday.

In his resignation letter to Johnson, he said “the chaos in your Cabinet & No10 this month is destroying our credibility.”

Guy Opperman: The British junior minister who served as the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State at the Department for Work and Pensions, resigned on Thursday. “I have given you ample opportunity to show real change,” Opperman said in his resignation letter addressed to Johnson. “Sadly, recent events have shown clearly that government simply cannot function with you in charge.” 

Chris Philp: He resigned from his role as UK’s Minister for Tech and the Digital Economy, saying: “given events over the past few weeks and months I, therefore, think that you should resign as Prime Minister and it follows that I cannot serve in your Government any longer.”

James Cartlidge: The junior minister, who served as Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for the Ministry of Justice, became the 53rd member of the government to resign.

 “I felt duty-bound to remain in the post given the very challenging circumstances facing the criminal courts. I took the view there had to be some semblance of government in this crucial arm of our constitutions. But the position is clearly untenable,” he said in his resignation letter shared Thursday.

3:42 a.m. ET, July 7, 2022

Boris Johnson clings to power after dozens of British lawmakers resign and urge him to quit

From CNN's Rob Picheta and Ivana Kottasová in London

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson speaks during Prime Minister's Questions at the House of Commons in London, England, on July 6.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson speaks during Prime Minister's Questions at the House of Commons in London, England, on July 6. (Jessica Taylor/UK Parliament/Reuters)

Boris Johnson's scandal-ravaged premiership was dangling by a thread on Thursday as he battled efforts to force him from office even as a growing number of government ministers urged the beleaguered British Prime Minister to resign.

The United Kingdom woke on Thursday morning to more than 50 members of government leaving their posts, including several cabinet ministers.

The previous day, Johnson began by vowing to fight on, despite the shock resignations of his finance minister, health secretary and dozens of other lawmakers furious about the latest saga to engulf Downing Street: the botched handling of a resignation by Johnson's former deputy chief whip, Chris Pincher, who was accused of groping two men last week.

Johnson endured a battering at Prime Minister's Questions and a bruising appearance before a parliamentary committee of senior lawmakers in Parliament, before a delegation of cabinet members arrived at Downing Street to ask Johnson to resign.

But Johnson refused to go down without a fight. On Wednesday night, he sacked close ally and senior cabinet minister Michael Gove, who sources told CNN had urged Johnson earlier in the day to accept that his time was up.

Another key ally, Home Secretary Priti Patel, told Johnson that the general view of the Conservative party was that he had to go, a source close to Patel told CNN.

As the news of Gove's firing emerged, a spokesman for Johnson insisted that the Prime Minister was in "really good spirits."

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