It is likely common knowledge now that on the 24th of May, Teresa May announced her departure from 10 Downing Street.
Watching her broadcasted resignation speech was difficult for not only her supporters, but also her critics. She gave a speech in which she reflected on the government’s achievements including increased funding for mental health, and reduced unemployment. However, May also acknowledged the failure of the Tory government to deliver the result of the 2016 EU referendum: Brexit.
May confesses that Brexit is something which ‘is and will always remain a matter of deep regret to me that I have not been able to deliver’. Her speech then goes on to quote the humanitarian, Sir Nicholas Winton, who once told May to ‘never forget that compromise is not a dirty word. Life depends on compromise’. This is a particularly fitting quote for the occasion, having desperately tried to push through several Brexit deals and compromise with the EU for the best agreement terms. Sadly, however, these propositions have continuously been rejected, leaving the UK’s stance and security in question.
Having lost the support of the majority of her own Party members, May caved into the intense pressure and named the 7th of June as the day that she will step aside as the Conservative leader. We have seen Teresa May try and fail to deliver Brexit, dance, and now tearfully bid farewell to her time as Prime Minister of the UK saying…
‘I will shortly leave the job that it has been the honour of my life to hold. The second female prime minister but certainly not the last. I do so with no ill will, but with enormous and enduring gratitude to have had the opportunity to serve the country I love.’
Some have criticised May for essentially breaking down in the spotlight when she delivered this speech. Many have simply never seen a politician show their human side, and Teresa May did just that. In front of the cameras was suddenly a change from the Prime Minister to a woman who had failed, yet done her best with the situation she had.
So, where does this leave the UK government? The Conservative party announced the race will begin with the close of nominations in the week beginning the 10th of June. From there, the Tory MPs will partake in a sequence of votes to narrow down the number of candidates to two. The final two will go through to a ballot of all party members, scheduled to take place in early July.
Many expect that the next leader will be a Brexiteer, with many having their bets on our beloved Boris Johnson. However, one thing is for certain; whoever takes up the role of the new Prime Minister will have to decide whether to continue negotiating for a deal, or leave the EU with no deal in the 31st of October. So ultimately, the future of the UK is potentially in the hands of Boris, or any other MP so lucky as to make it.
These are a few of the faces who are are apparently making their plans to take Teresa May’s place when the time comes…
Regardless of Brexit, the UK must be governed by a Prime Minister and time will tell which keen candidate makes it to this position. From then, yet more time will tell whether they along with the Conservative Party, are able to supersede Teresa May’s attempt to lead Britain through the process of leaving the European Union.