Boris Johnson extends funding lead in battle to become UK PM

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FILE PHOTO: Boris Johnson, a leadership candidate for Britain’s Conservative Party, visits the Thames Valley Police Training Centre in Reading, Britain, July 3, 2019. REUTERS/Dylan Martinez/Pool

LONDON (Reuters) – Boris Johnson has increased his funding lead over Jeremy Hunt as they race to become the next British prime minister, official figures showed on Wednesday, and has so far raised the fourth-largest amount by any politician in Britain in recent years.

With Johnson and foreign minister Hunt stepping up their campaigns to replace Theresa May, both are seeking to raise money to pay for the cost of hiring venues, transport, staffing costs, leaflets and advertising.

Johnson has registered £235,000 in the last two weeks, taking the total amount he has received in the last year to £502,000, according to new figures released by parliament.

The most recent donations include £50,000 from Peter Cruddas, one of the City of London’s most prominent Brexiteers, and £50,000 from James Reuben, a financier.

By comparison, Hunt has registered no additional donations in the last two weeks.

Reporting By Andrew MacAskill and Kate Holton; editing by Stephen Addison

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