Will it be PM Boris by the end of the year?
On the Betfair TMay exit year market TMay the 65% favourite for when she will step down as Party leader and Prime Minister is 2019. This suggests that there’s likely to be a leadership contest this year and no doubt the events that are taking place today in Westminster will have an impact on the eventual outcome of that.
A lot of eyes will be on the role of the former Mayor and Foreign Secretary, Boris Johnson and how he handles the response to Theresa May’s revised deal that was agreed last night in Strasbourg. There’s a suggestion that he might appear the the peacemaker -the once leader Leaver who was ready to bring the party together for the sake of ensuring that Brexit takes place on time.
Whatever there’s little doubt that he has been on maneuvers of late and it’s been remarkable how he has created a very different image for himself. His hair has been cut and he looks less like the fool of yesteryear. My view is that he’s just kept up with his age. Once he turned 50 his persona as the joker became harder to sustain. This was something that you expect of a younger man and that did quite ring true as he got older.
He’s been advised by Lynton Crosby who was the campaign mastermind behind his London mayoral victories in 2018 and 2012.
It’s always been said that Johnson’s biggest challenge in the leadership election will be getting to the final 2 report on the membership ballot which is decided by an MPs ballot. This is looking less of a hurdle and all the polling suggests that if it does get on the members ballot then he would be the victor.
My big caveat with all CON leadership contests is that the established favourite never gets it as David Davis, Michael Portillo and Michael Heseltine would no doubt attest.