LONDON Boris Johnson, the front-runner to succeed Conservative Prime Minister Theresa May, insisted on Wednesday that Britain must keep the option of leaving the European Union without a withdrawal agreement as a last resort.
Johnson took a commanding lead Thursday, winning by far the largest share of support in first-round voting by Conservative Party lawmakers.
Johnson, a former foreign secretary and leading Brexit campaigner, secured 114 of the 313 votes cast in the round, which reduced the field of candidates from 10 to seven. His successor as foreign secretary, Jeremy Hunt, trailed with 43 votes, followed by Environment Secretary Michael Gove with 37.
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