Radio caller says ‘bring Boris back’
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Podcast host Brendan O’Neill said the “meltdown” of the “chattering class” over the Prime Minister confirms how unhinged the political elite has become. The Brexit supporter takes aim at figures including Alastair Campbell who has described Mr Johnson as the worst PM the country has ever had.
Mr O’Neill calls for a reckoning with “anti-Boris mania” in an op-ed entitled “The ‘adults in the room’ are the scariest people in politics”.
In the piece, he takes on critics of Mr Johnson who claim he is the worst PM, citing the records of former office holders, including Margaret Thatcher and her war on striking miners as well as Tony Blair and the 2003 Iraq War.
The writer argues Boris-bashing by swathes of the chattering class is evidence of a disgust among the elites for what Mr Johnson is seen to represent, namely “ordinary people’s desire to shake up the technocratic establishment and to secure a little more democratic clout for themselves”.
Mr O’Neill, in an article published in the online magazine spiked, claims: “They accused us, the Brexit-backing masses, of allowing our passions to overrule our reason, but it is now clear that that is far truer of them…
“The self-styled ‘adults in the room’, the supposedly measured technocrats, have exposed how rash and dangerous they can be when their power and ‘expertise’ is challenged by the throng.
“And make no mistake – to them, Boris is the emblem of the throng. He’s the charlatan who gives expression to the charlatanism of the masses. It’s Boris they bash, but it’s us they loathe.”
He concludes with a rallying cry that is perhaps time to show how “hardcore” people are prepared to be “in the name of defending the promise of Brexit and democracy”.
Mr O’Neill ends: “[W]e don’t need to defend Boris – we need to defend ourselves.”
It comes as Mr Johnson delivered a lengthy statement in the House of Commons on Thursday in which he sought to defend his legacy at No.10.
The Prime Minister said he was proud of the Government’s record and promised his administration would continue to deliver in its final weeks.
Mr Johnson used a written ministerial statement, usually used for important official announcements, to set out his Government’s achievements, including Brexit, the response to COVID-19 and Britain’s support for Ukraine.
He said the statement puts on record why the millions of people who voted Conservative in 2019 were right to place their trust in him and in his Conservative Government.
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As he prepares to leave office, Mr Johnson said: “I know the Conservative Government that follows after us will do what its predecessors have always done and meet the challenges of the day by serving the British people.”
Meanwhile, the remaining leadership hopefuls in the race to replace Mr Johnson have come to blows over their tax proposals with former Chancellor Rishi Sunak warning against a “huge borrowing spree” as Foreign Secretary Liz Truss defended tax-cutting plans worth at least £30billion a year.
Mr Sunak did not pull any punches in an interview on Thursday, claiming current evidence suggests the Conservatives would lose the next general election under his rival’s leadership.
He told LBC: “If you look at all the polling evidence that we have, and you see what that says, it’s pretty clear that I am the person that is best placed to defeat Keir Starmer in the next election.”
The MP for Richmond said he thought borrowing £30billion for unfunded tax cuts would be inflationary, adding that going on a huge borrowing spree would only make the situation worse.
Ms Truss defended her tax cutting plans, telling broadcasters during a visit to Peterborough: “What is not affordable is putting up taxes, choking off growth, and ending up in a much worse position.”
The South West Norfolk MP promised an emergency budget to reverse the national insurance hike as part of her proposals to boost economic growth.
Ms Truss insisted she was not planning “public spending reductions” despite pledging vast tax cuts.
She told reporters: “What I am planning is public service reforms to get more money to the front line, to cut out a lot of the bureaucracy that people face…
“I’m certainly not talking about public spending cuts. What I’m talking about is raising growth.”
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