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Johnson up against Hunt in final showdown for Tory Leadership

Boris Johnson and Jeremy Hunt go head to head in the race to become the UK's next prime minister after Michael Gove was eliminated from the Tory leadership contest in today's final ballot of MPs.

The results of this afternoon's ballot are as follows:
Boris Johnson - 160 votes
Jeremy Hunt - 77 votes
Michael Gove - 75 votes

The final decision as to who will be stepping into Number 10 now rests with the 160,000 Conservative Party members in a postal ballot, with the result expected in the week beginning July 22.

Sajid Javid promises 20,000 police officers if he's made PM

Sajid Javid has said he will put 20,000 more policemen back on the streets if he were to become Prime Minister.

Challenged on the current knife crime epidemic and his role in stamping out the issue as Home Secretary, the Tory leader contender admitted there were 'issues' with policing numbers.

"I take full responsibility for doing all I can, it has been a priority of mine from day one," Sajid told Piers Morgan and Susanna Reid.

He added: "I have been Home Secretary for about a year and in that time I have done everything I can on all fronts, I accept my responsibility, I have never shied away from it.

"We need action on multiple fronts. It is about resources and I have accepted there is an issue around police numbers, I have said that, if I was prime minister, I would put 20,000 more police on the streets.”

Elsewhere, Sajid insisted that he will not withdraw from the Conservative Party leadership race, despite only just scraping through to the next round with 33 votes.

He explained: “I am not withdrawing. I am certainly going to absolutely continue. I am in this to win it. It’s important to remember with Conservative Party leader contests, they are full of surprises and it’s still all to play for.”

Sajid continued: “I know I was the only person on that stage who went to my local comp...I was the first in my family to go to university. The reason I am in this is because I don’t want that to be something rare. In the future, I want more people with my kind of background up there.”

Asked if he would put all the police that Theresa May removed back on the streets, he said: “I would. I think now when we look back, if you look at the rise of all types of crime, it was wrong to have the numbers cut in the way that they were.”

When challenged on how he would pay for the extra police, Sajid explained: “I would pay for all that by slowing the pace of debt reduction. I think we can afford to spend more but at the same time bring debt down.”

Sajid Javid addresses the knife crime epidemic in the UK.

Credit: Rex

Piers and Susanna also grilled the Home Secretary on the drugs scandal that has swept Westminster recently, and he insisted he has never tried any illegal substances.

He said: “It’s true that I have never taken drugs. The street I grew up in in Bristol, it was the centre of the local drugs trade. I used to walk out my door every day, walk home from school and see the impact of drugs. It is something that has therefore never attracted me.”

However, Sajid said he doesn’t think politicians owning up to taking drugs disqualifies them from being Prime Minister, as he added: “I think it is good that they have been honest and straightforward. I don’t think [it disqualifies them] People should be forgiven if they have made mistakes.”

The conversation later turned to Brexit, to which Sajid insisted that he believes a deal can still be reached.

He said: “The way to defeat the Brexit Party is to Brexit and the best way to do that is with a deal. This is why I have set out a plan which is to focus on the current Withdrawal Agreement with a change to the backstop.

"One of the reasons that the EU keeps saying no is that they think we don’t have any realistic alternatives. The biggest mistake we have made on this is about three years ago, we walked into the negotiating room, we put our hands on the table and we let them handcuff us to the table. Now we need someone to unlock those handcuffs and I can do that. I have been doing billion-dollar negotiations for 20 years before I got into government."

He continued: “You prepare for No Deal, not because you want it, it is precisely to get a deal. We need to prepare more. We should have taken [the negotiations] seriously. We need someone in there that is a negotiator, that has the experience.”

At the close of the interview, Sajid said he was “quietly confident” about the next round of the leadership battle and promised to return to Good Morning Britain when he is in charge.

He promised: “I will see you when I am Prime Minister.”

Tory leadership: Dominic Raab is eliminated as Boris storms second ballot

Tory leadership race sees Dominic Raab out of the running to become the next PM.

Credit: PA

Dominic Raab failed to secure the 33 votes needed to get to the next round.

Former Brexit minister Dominic Raab has been eliminated from the Tory leadership race, as frontrunner Boris Johnson topped the ballot again maintaining a substantial lead over his rivals.

This afternoon, Conservative MPs voted in a second ballot to select the next prime minister.

Former London Mayor Boris Johnson, is well ahead of the field with 126 votes, while Raab failed to get the 33 votes needed to continue into the next round.

Elsewhere, the race for 10 Downing Street is heating up with Tory colleagues Jeremy Hunt just above the others in second place, with 46 votes.

Outsider Rory Stewart's success is continuing to raise eyebrows after pulling in 37 votes, four more votes than Sajid Javid who received 33.

The results are as follows:
Boris Johnson, 126
Jeremy Hunt, 46
Michael Gove, 41
Rory Stewart, 37
Sajid Javid, 33
Dominic Raab, 30

Following the results, Rory Stewart took to Twitter to celebrate his rise in popularity.

Mel B admits she’s “upset” Victoria Beckham didn’t go to a Spice Girls concert

The 44-year-old pop star spoke of her disappointment at former bandmate and friend Victoria Beckham's lack of support for the group's recent tour.

Mel B has admitted she was disappointed that Victoria Beckham didn't show support at any of the recent Spice Girls gigs.

The singer, also known as Scary Spice, reunited for a 13-date UK tour with bandmates Geri Halliwell, Melanie Chisholm and Emma Bunton this month, including a sold-out concert at Wembley Stadium.

Victoria, who chose not to participate in the tour to focus on her fashion empire, was visibly absent from the crowds at the gigs in London.

Mel B told Good Morning Britain: “I expected her to come and just say hi at least. Not even on stage, just as an audience member supporting.

“I’m sure she has her reasons for not. I’ve already said, ‘yeah I was upset’, I still am a little bit. It is what it is and us girls we all support each other no matter what, but yeah it is disappointing. Wedding, Spice Girls show…”

Asked whether Victoria's no-show would spark a new rift among the group, Mel B added: “No [it’s not a rift]. We’re all adults, we all have to respectfully get on with whatever. But it is a bit disappointing, let’s put it that way.”

Three contenders eliminated from the Tory Leadership contest with Boris Johnson gaining most votes

Mark Harper, Esther McVey and Andrea Leadsom are the first Conservative leadership contenders to be eliminated from the race for Number 10 after failing to secure enough votes in the first ballot of Tory MPs.

The first of in a series of secret ballots was held by Conservative MPs today, which required candidates to secure at least 17 votes.

There were 313 votes cast. Boris Johnson is the frontrunner with the highest number of votes in the first ballot for the next Conservative party leader and Prime Minister.

Esther McVey, Andrea Leadsom and Mark Harper have failed to make it through to the second ballot

The full breakdown of the first ballot was:

Michael Gove 37
Matt Hancock 20
Mark Harper 10
Jeremy Hunt 43
Sajid Javid 23
Boris Johnson 114
Andrea Leadsom 11
Esther McVey 9
Dominic Raab 27
Rory Stewart 19

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