‘Never underestimate Boris Johnson!’ Former election guru backs PM to bounce back

Boris Johnson: ‘Never underestimate’ PM says James McGrath

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Boris Johnson has been backed to overcome recent setbacks by one of the men who help deliver his successful 2008 London mayoral campaign. Mr Johnson has been rocked by political scandals and unrest from backbench Conservative MPs. Former election strategist James McGrath has argued on Sky News Australia that the Prime Minister is simply a “lucky in life” politician who will be able to turn around events and surprise his doubters. 

Mr McGrath told Sky News Australia: “First thing is, never underestimate Boris.

“He’s one of those people, there are some politicians who are lucky in life and Boris is what I call a lucky politician.

“In that, he makes all these mistakes all the time, but he is able to skate through.

“Having said that, he has had an appalling fortnight, and it culminated with the vote last night in the UK, where 100 Tory MPs rebelled against him, and they only got these provisions through effectively…with the support of Labour.”

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“And it wasn’t a rebellion by one group of the Tory party, this was everybody from Damian Green, who’s a moderate Tory MP to Iain Duncan Smith who’s on the right of the party.

“You have former cabinet ministers, Theresa May abstained,” he continued.

“You have talked already of letters being sent to the 1922 committee to call for an effective vote of no confidence in his leadership.

“Boris is in a lot of trouble.”

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Mr McGrath added” “And one of the issues with Boris is you see his persona on TV and that’s what it’s like in private, but he is not what you’re called clubbable person doesn’t have many close friends.

“He’s not an actual networker, and so he doesn’t have a strong Praetorian Guard out there.

“And the Tory party is a very pragmatic party.

“And if they think that he’s bleeding them into the valley of death, watch those marginal MPs, especially those from the north of England, who won under his leadership in 2019, watch them move.”

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The Prime Minister has found his position under threat as rank and file Conservative MPs start to lose patience with Mr Johnson’s apparent inability to handle allegations of Tory sleaze and Government double standards.

The growing frustrations come following the row over claims Downing Street played host to parties in the run-up to Christmas last year when London was under strict Coronavirus lockdown.

The latest row to engulf Mr Johnson’s Government erupted after the Prime Minister’s spokesperson Allegra Stratton was caught on camera appearing to joke about a Downing Street Christmas party during a recorded press conference rehearsal.

Ms Stratton was forced into a teary resignation last Wednesday after the Prime Minister told MPs he was “furious” over the content of the video. 

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