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Johnson's UK majority cut to one after poll defeat

Credit: Reuters - Politics
Published on August 2, 2019 - Duration: 01:24s

Johnson's UK majority cut to one after poll defeat

Britain's pro-European Union Liberal Democrats have won a parliamentary seat from the governing Conservatives, in a blow to Prime Minister Boris Johnson in his first electoral test since taking office.

Francesca Lynagh reports.

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Johnson's UK majority cut to one after poll defeat

The first electoral test for Britain's new prime minister Boris Johnson didn't go too well.

The Liberal Democrats won a parliamentary seat from the Conservatives in Brecon and Radnorshire, leaving Johnson - who has been in office for less than two weeks - with a working majority in parliament of just one.

It comes as he heads towards a showdown with lawmakers in the autumn, over his plan to pull Britain out of the EU - without a deal if necessary.

The leader of the Lib Dems, Jo Swinson, said Friday (August 2) that Johnson's shrinking majority shows he has no mandate to crash Britain out of the EU.

Swinson - whose party now has 13 seats in parliament - has vowed to do ''whatever it takes to stop Brexit.'' Media reports suggest at least one Tory MP could defect to the Lib Dems. That would officially rob Johnson of a majority.

Meanwhile some rebel Conservatives have hinted that they would vote against the government to thwart a no-deal Brexit.

If lawmakers stop Johnson going through with it, by way of a no confidence vote, then he could be forced to hold an election before Brexit is delivered.

The result would be anyone's guess.

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