Boris Johnson’s desire to be Prime Minister is why he will stay & try to make a success of being Foreign Secretary while Mrs May cannot sack him without causing problems for herself.
William Hill have a market up on whether Boris Johnson will still be Foreign Secretary on the 1st of January 2018.
I think despite the events of the summer when Michael Gove’s transformation into the lovechild of Frank Underwood and Niccolò Machiavelli fatally damaged Boris Johnson’s chances of suceeding David Cameron, Boris still wants to be Prime Minister. He knows he needs to show he can be and is a successful Foreign Secretary rather than be perceived as neither a flouncer nor the court jester if his dreams are to be realised.
Though it speaks much about Mrs May’s people skills that in the past few weeks we’ve seen talk of her Chancellor quitting (and his odds as first out of the cabinet tumble from 25/1 to 8/1) and now there’s a betting market on her Foreign Secretary not lasting the whole of 2017.
To lose her two senior ministers so early in her premiership would be a harbinger of a forthcoming leadership challenge to Mrs May. As someone wryly observed to me a few weeks ago Theresa May is Mrs Thatcher without the warmth, people skills, or election winning nous, can you imagine Mrs Thatcher and her staff banning a fellow Tory MP from a dinner after said MP commented on the PM’s choice in clothes? Mrs May and her staff are displaying all the character flaws of this country’s last mandateless Prime Minister.
Given the recent comments made by Boris about Iran and Saudi Arabia and subsequent contretemps which have spilled out into several of today’s papers with Iain Duncan Smith being touted as a replacement for Boris as Foreign Secretary (Yes IDS as Foreign Secretary!), I can see why people might want to back the 6/4 but all told I’m taking the 1/2 on Boris still being Her Majesty’s Principal Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs on the 1st of January 2018.
With Theresa May’s Commons majority reducing in the past month and the looming Brexit negotiations she needs Boris as much as Boris needs her, were she to lose the front man of the Leave campaign then doubts about her commitment to the full fat Brexit that many Tory leavers want will emerge. Both Boris and Mrs May have to make it work for both their careers.