George Osborne still believes he is in play. Here are the top lines from his Today programme interview:
- He’s not going anywhere: “I don’t want to write my memoir because I don’t know how the story ends.”
- Theresa May was the best PM “of the candidates who put themselves forward”. Subtle.
- May’s grammar schools plans don’t help the majority: “80% of the discussion is about where 20% off the children go”
- The new PM’s “special share” provision for Hinkley “would not add anything”
- He is going to be noisy: “the voice for the liberal mainstream of the country”
- Will he be a distraction from May’s government? “Not necessarily.” So, yes.
Earlier this week Paul Goodman at ConHome foresaw a route back to power for Osborne: the Tories lose to a Sadiq Khan-led Labour in 2025, Osborne becomes party leader and wins the 2030 election, becoming PM at the age of 59. If May goes wrong, Boris 2020 is the more likely outcome. Osborne’s very long game is a very long shot, unfortunately it’s all he has left…