UK leadership favorite Boris Johnson vows to deliver Brexit

British Conservative Party lawmaker Boris Johnson leaves his home in London, Tuesday, June 11, 2019. Britain's Conservative Party is holding an election to replace Prime Minister Theresa May, who resigned last week after failing to lead Britain out of the European Union on schedule. Former Foreign Minister Boris Johnson is currently the bookies favorite to replace May. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)

LONDON — Front-runner Boris Johnson is officially launching his campaign to be Britain's next prime minister, telling fellow Conservatives they must take the U.K. out of the European Union or see the party wiped out by angry voters.

Johnson plans to tell supporters at a campaign rally Wednesday that "delay means defeat."

Ten Conservative lawmakers are running to succeed Theresa May as party leader and prime minister.

Johnson is the bookies' favorite and has won the backing of many Brexiteer Conservatives by promising Britain will quit the EU by Oct. 31, with or without a divorce deal.

He's a flamboyant and popular figure, but rivals have criticized his low-profile campaign. Johnson hasn't given any television interviews or held public events, in a bid to avoid gaffes that could hurt his chances.

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