UK Conservatives cast votes in 1st round of leadership race

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LONDON (AP) — Conservative Party lawmakers in Britain are casting ballots in the first round of an election to replace Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

The internal party contest will replace the flamboyant, scandal-ridden Johnson with a new and much lesser-known prime minister. Eight candidates have secured the required backing to make the first ballot. The 358 Tory legislators will vote Wednesday afternoon, with the last-placed candidate and any others who fail to get 30 votes dropping off the list.

Further rounds of voting will take place Thursday and, if needed, next week. The final two contenders will face a run-off vote by all Conservative Party members. The winner will automatically become prime minister, without the need for a national election.

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