Prime Minister Boris Johnson survived an internal party revolt last night, but over two-fifths of his colleague in Parliament voted to oust him from office.
William Hague, a former leader of Boris’ Conservative party, said the 211-to-148 confidence vote was “the worst possible result from the Conservative Party’s point of view” because it leaves them with a wounded leader who does not command broad party support.
The immediate cause of the revolt was that Johnson and his staff routinely violated COVID lockdown rules with a series of parties while demanding ordinary people be completely isolated.
But Fraser Nelson, who edits the Spectator magazine that Boris himself once ran, says there is more to the story: “The immense social damage (lockdowns) wrought, the tax burden reaching a 70-year high, a spending-splurge instinct, lack of any idea what to with Brexit and allowing another welfare crisis to incubate.”
Boris replaced Theresa May as prime minister only six months after she suffered a similar collapse in public support.
It’s time for Conservatives to start looking for a leader who can promote a pro-growth, non-sleaze platform into the next general election in 2024.