Boris Johnson was sworn in as the new British prime minister Wednesday, pledging to deliver a swift Brexit and spending his first full day in office Thursday packing his Cabinet with hard-line Brexiteers.
His election was the first time that a party’s membership directly chose the prime minister. The membership of the Conservative Party who voted for Johnson represents less than 1% of the British population.
Johnson, who previously served as mayor of London and foreign secretary, replaces outgoing Prime Minister Theresa May.
Boris Johnson is a highly contentious figure in the United Kingdom who has built his career on the controversy. He is known for outrageous political gaffes and is a close ally of President Donald Trump. He has vowed to cut taxes for the rich, and positioned himself as a friend to big banks.
Thousands of protesters marched through Central London to protest the new prime minister Wednesday. We speak with Ash Sarkar, senior editor of Novara Media, who says Johnson has crafted a public persona for himself as “bumbling, ineffectual, posh but benign,” but says this facade conceals “someone who has always been a very ambitious man.”
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