Ladbrokes make it 3/2 that he’ll be gone by then
In his column in the Times this morning about the rise of Rishi Sunak Times writer Iain Martin makes the following astute observation about Boris’s career plans:
At the heart of whispered Conservative calculations is the great unspoken truth of Tory affairs right now: it will be surprising if Mr Johnson fights the next election. The prime minister does not look like a man up for another five to ten years in No 10 when he could make lots of money delivering funny speeches. To put it politely, he doesn’t live for doing his ministerial boxes. This whole PM business isn’t really his thing.
This articulates my thoughts exactly as I watched Johnson at PMQs on Wednesday. He looked very uncomfortable as though he’d be happier just about anywhere in the world apart from being quizzed by Starmer in a chamber where just 50 MPs had been allowed in because of the pandemic restrictions.
Clearly the PM was hit hard by the virus and his whole personality has not returned to what it was like before he was rushed to hospital in early April. This being accountable thing doesn’t fit well with his whole approach.
Looking round the betting Ladbrokes have at 3/2 that Johnson won’t lead the Tories at the next election. These are some of the other options:
Boris is not helped by there being a ready-made replacement, Rishi, waiting in the wings and it could be that his exit from Number 10 is not voluntary.
It is hard to predict the timing of the departure which is why I like the 3/2 that Johnson will not be the leader at the general election.