Odds cut on Boris Johnson becoming the shortest serving prime minister

PUBLISHED: 13:30 24 September 2019 | UPDATED: 15:37 24 September 2019

Prime Minister Boris Johnson in New York after judges at the Supreme Court ruling. Photograph: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson in New York after judges at the Supreme Court ruling. Photograph: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire.

Bookmakers have cut the odds on the chances of Boris Johnson becoming the shortest serving prime minister in history.

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Johnson will need to remain in post until November 20 to avoid the distinction of holding the office for fewer days than any of his predecessors.

On that date he will overtake George Canning, who clocked up 118 days as prime minister before his death in 1827, and who holds the record for the shortest time in office.

At the time of the Supreme Court ruling Johnson was on 62 days.

The bookmaker Coral have also reduced the odds on Boris Johnson being replaced as PM this year from 2/1 to evens.

It is offering 6/4 that Johnson is the shortest serving PM in history, while another bookmaker, Paddy Power, is offering 5/6.

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George Canning served as Tory prime minister between April and August 1827.

He is one of a small number of prime ministers to die while still in office.

Canning is also famous for taking part in a duel with a fellow cabinet minister.

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The event took place at 6am on September 21 1809 on Putney Heath in south London, and involved Canning, then foreign secretary, drawing a pistol against minister of war Viscount Castlereagh.

Castlereagh believed Canning had been plotting to get him sacked and challenged him to a duel.

Canning failed to shoot his colleague and in return was wounded by Castlereagh in the thigh.

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