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The Editors

Boris Johnson Finally Admits Defeat

The latest scandal to rock 10 Downing Street was one too many.

Delayed departure.

Delayed departure.

Photographer: Dan Kitwood/Getty Images

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson was nothing if not tenacious. In recent weeks, he’d shrugged off a relentless series of setbacks and embarrassments — almost all of his own making. This week, the latest induced two of his most senior ministers to resign, prompting a cascade of further departures and a surge of new demands from Conservative MPs calling on Johnson to stand down. The pressure finally worked: On Thursday, Johnson announced his resignation.

A leadership contest will follow. The tasks awaiting Johnson’s successor are unenviable. Britain faces serious and mounting challenges on the economy, Europe, public services and industrial relations. As rarely before, the country needs a strong and competent leader with the ability to command confidence.