Tomorrow night at 10 PM a documentary on Boris Johnson by Gary Gibbon is due to be screened on Channel 4 and judging by some of the extracts so far released it looks set to unsettle CON delegates in Manchester.
This is the start of an article on the programme by Gibbon in The I.
“Several months before the general election, Boris Johnson returned to the Foreign Office after a meeting with Theresa May, flanked by her powerful joint Chiefs of Staff, Nick Timothy and Fiona Hill. It was clear to him who was in control – and it wasn’t the Prime Minister. “That’s modern slavery right there,” he told a colleague.
More recently, he’s told allies that the disastrous general election result has left the Prime Minister a shell of her former self. Her mighty aides have been dispatched and the failed snap election hangs over every meeting. Her body language, he has told allies, is shrunken..”
Another extract provides an interesting insight into TMay’s pre-June 8th 2017 managerial style.
“At one National Security Council meeting before the election, one of her Joint Chiefs of Staff had criticised Johnson’s contribution to the meeting. The Prime Minister, closing the meeting, said the policy line was clear and everyone, including Johnson, must follow it. There were echoes of the ritual humiliations Margaret Thatcher meted out to Geoffrey Howe…”
My guess is that leadership speculation will be on the same level or even higher than in 2003 when IDS got the longest conference standing ovation ever less than four weeks before fellow MPs booted him out. The big difference with May of course is that the latter has been tested in an election at which the Tories lost their majority.