On Thursday, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced his resignation. It is a transcript of his speech, lightly edited for spelling, as reported Reuters.
“It is now clear that the Conservative Party wants to have a new leader and therefore a new prime minister, and I agree with Sir Graham Brady, chairman of our backbench MP, that the process should begin now and that the schedule should be announced next week. Will be done. And I have appointed a cabinet today, until I do, until there is a new leader.
“So I want to say to the millions of people who voted for us in 2019, many of whom voted for the Conservatives for the first time: ‘Thank you for the incredible mandate, the largest Conservative majority since 1987, the largest part of the vote in 1979.’
“And in the last few days I have personally fought so hard to continue to deliver on that mandate that not only did I want to do it, but I felt it was my job, my duty, to continue my obligation to you. To do what we promised in 2019.
“And, of course, I’m very proud of what this government has achieved: from Brexit to settling our relations with the continent for more than half a century, restoring this country’s ability to make its own laws in parliament, through all the epidemics we have, the fastest vaccine in Europe.” Providing a rollout, the fastest exit from the lockdown, and, in the last few months, leading the West to stand up against Putin’s aggression in Ukraine.
“And let me tell you now, the people of Ukraine, I know that in the UK we will support your freedom struggle as long as it takes.
“And at the same time, in this country, we are advancing a huge program of investment in infrastructure and skills and technology, the largest in a century. Because if I have an insight into people, it is talent and talent and stimulus and imagination are equally distributed among the population but there is no opportunity. And that’s why we must be flat, exposing the potential in every part of the UK. And if we can do that, in this country, we will be the richest in Europe.
“And over the last few days, I’ve tried to convince my colleagues that it would be bizarre to change the government when we do so much and when we have such a huge mandate and when we actually only have a few points. Behind the election, even in the middle, after several months of relentless sledging and when the economic scene is so difficult both internally and internationally.
“And I regret not being able to succeed in those arguments, and of course it’s painful that I don’t see myself through so many ideas and projects. Friends, in politics, no one is far from essential, and our brilliant and Darwinian system will create another leader who is equally committed to moving this country forward in difficult times, not only helping families go through it but changing and improving our path. Do things, reduce the burden on businesses and families, and yes, cut taxes, because that’s the way to grow and generate revenue that we have to pay for great public services.
“And to that new leader, I say, wherever he is, I say I will support him as much as I can.
“And to you, the British public, I know there will be a lot of people who will be relieved and maybe a few will be disappointed. And I want you to know how sorry I am for giving up the best job in the world. But break them.
“I want to thank Carrie and our children, all the members of my family who have had to endure so much. I would like to thank the Peerless British Civil Service for all the help and support you have given to our police, our emergency services and of course our great NHS who helped extend my own office at a critical moment. Our armed services and our organizations that are admired all over the world, and the members and supporters of our indomitable Conservative Party whose selfless campaign makes our democracy possible.
“I want to thank the No. 10 wonderful staff here and of course the Checkers and our fantastic Prop Force detectives, a team, however, who never leaked.
“Above all, I want to thank you, British people, for the great opportunity you have given me. And I want to let you know that from now on, until there is a new Prime Minister, your interests will be served and the government of the country will be run.
“Being prime minister is a lesson in itself. I have traveled to every part of the United Kingdom and in addition to the beauty of our natural world, I have found many people with unlimited British originality and so willing to tackle old problems in new ways that I know that although things may seem dark now, our future Golden together.
“Thank you all very much.”