Prime Minister Boris Addresses Parliament

Not everyone turned up for their first glimpse of Boris’s sunlit uplands…

McDonnell: Most Right Wing Cabinet in my Lifetime

The endorsements just keep flying in for Boris’s new Cabinet, it was John McDonnell’s turn on Peston last night to hail it as the “most right wing Cabinet in my lifetime” and predict that we’ll see some “pretty hardline neo-liberal policies come out”. High praise indeed from Britain’s most left-wing ever Shadow Chancellor. McDonnell astutely notes that they will be “differentiated certainly from the Labour Party”…

Whether it really suits Corbyn “down to the ground” is another matter, he may end up finding out sooner than he really wants. New Leader of the Commons Jacob Rees-Mogg told Peston a general election was not a “government objective” but was “impossible to rule out” given the Parliamentary arithmetic. The way Boris ruthlessly stamped his authority on the Cabinet yesterday suggests he is more than prepared to face down any potential rebels. With an election if necessary…

McDonnell couldn’t even say Labour would definitely back Remain, meanwhile Corbyn continues to wander round aimlessly calling for a general election while refusing to table a vote of no confidence in the new government. Labour’s Marxist leadership may be in for a sharp shock now they’re no longer getting an easy ride against May’s muddled centrism…

Prime Minister Boris Johnson

Prime Minister Boris Johnson…

“Never mind the back stop, the buck stops with me… The doubters, the gloomsters, the doomsters are going to get it wrong. No one in the last few centuries has succeeded in betting against the pluck and nerve of this country. They will not succeed today”

Boris’ First Speech as Prime Minister

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Prime Minister Boris

Boris Bringing Back Dominic Cummings

Vote Leave mastermind Dominic Cummings is set for a sensational return to government as a senior adviser to Boris Johnson. He met with Boris to outline his ideas weeks ago. The civil service will be wetting themselves about this…

UPDATE: All the right people are not happy at all…

Mark Spencer Confirmed as Next Chief Whip

Former dairy farmer, MP since 2010, and whip since 2017 Mark Spencer has been confirmed as the first appointment Boris will make to his Cabinet when he become Prime Minsiter tomorrow. Spencer will take on the unenviable brief of Chief Whip, and is helping the transition team today. As the Tory+DUP majority is set to stand at just three votes, it won’t be an easy job…
UPDATE: Cabinet moves are not expected until tomorrow but there have been some adviser moves today – Sky’s Chief Financial Officer Andrew Griffith has been appointed as a corporate adviser, while May’s Principal Private Secretary Peter Hill is resigning and will be replaced by Boris’s own choice of civil servant. Will other senior civil servants strongly associated with the May regime also be moving on…?
UPDATE: David Frost is reportedly joining Boris’s team in the Olly Robbins role – Frost is the CEO of the London Chamber of Commerce and Industry and was previously Boris’ SpAd and the boss of the Scotch Whisky Association. The LCCI have arguably been the most pragmatic industry group towards Brexit under his tenure, it’s definitely a boost for Brexit…

Brexit Party on Boris’s Case Already

The Brexit Party certainly aren’t planning to give Boris an easy ride, Nigel Farage and Richard Tice have already put out a statement warning that they will hold his feet to the fire on delivering Brexit by October 31st:

Farage: “I wish Boris Johnson well as Prime Minister with his ‘do or die’ pledge to deliver Brexit on October 31. It is ‘do or die’ not just for Brexit, but for the future of the Conservative party too. Does he have the courage to deliver for the country?”

Tice: “The Conservative members who have just elected Boris Johnson, and the voters who support him, are clear in their support for delivering Brexit on time. But can we trust him? He and the party he now leads have just 100 days to deliver. Boris is not well known for honouring his word on Brexit, since he voted for the terrible Withdrawal Agreement after calling it vassalage. The Brexit Party stands ready to fight a general election, contesting all 650 seats across the UK. We are the only party that can be trusted to deliver on Brexit.”

Tory Remainers have become so caught up in the Boris psychodrama that they have forgotten that there are 17.4 million very anxious Leave voters out there. Who have another party they can easily vote for if Remainers stop Boris delivering Brexit…

Boris Johnson’s Victory Speech

Tough Day for the Boris-Hating Punditocracy

Today is a tough day for journalists and columnists who will never be as successful as Boris, particularly the ones that wrote him off.

And what happened to Gove?


Of course it’s not just the pundits who wrote Boris off:

As Brexiteers celebrate tonight, spare a thought for the principled haters and even the mere detesters of Boris, Rafael Behr, Matthew d’Ancona, Philip Collins‏, Polly Toynbee, Owen Jones and not forgetting, of course, Mathew Parris. It can’t be easy for them…

Voting Has Now Closed…

The Guidoisation of politics continues. It’s Showtime…

Boris Brandishes Kipper

CCHQ Desperate for Boris Bounce Bank Balance Boost

CCHQ’s coffers have not been in the greatest of shapes since many of their big donors went dry in frustration at the party’s failure to deliver Brexit. The fact that the annual budget has ballooned from around £8 million per year to nearer £20 million per year hasn’t helped, largely due to vast staff increases as part of the Campaign Manager programme. It got so bad that Treasurer Mick Davis had to dip into his own pockets to fund the EU election campaign…

It’s fair to say that there aren’t that many big Boris fans in CCHQ, even so it’s now reached the stage where they’re so desperate for cash that they’re even joking that it #CantBeHunt if the party’s finances are to recover. As a member of the Treasurer’s department put it to one of Boris’s team earlier:

“While it’s clear Press and CRD hate Boris – the truth is the Party needs him. With the financial state the Party is in we need ‘Box Office Boris’, not a ‘straight to DVD also-ran’.”

Backing Boris to bring the big bucks back…

UPDATE: A CCHQ spokesman gets in touch to say: “CCHQ has been and continues to be strictly neutral in this contest.”

Boris Pledges Free Ports 150,000 Jobs Boost

In his Teesside visit today Boris took the opportunity to back what he described as a “well-written report” by Ben Houchen, Mayor of the Tees Valley advocating the introduction of ‘free ports’ to the UK to transform the coastal communities that surround the UK’s ports. Free ports are areas where tariffs do not apply, allowing companies to import, store, and re-export goods without dealing with tax or government bureaucracy. Sounds good to Guido…

Boris has promised to launch an immediate review into setting up free ports across the UK to encourage investment, and to introduce pilot free ports as soon as possible after the UK leaves the EU on 31 October. Some studies say that introducing free ports could increase employment in the North of England by 150,000. Bring it on!

Boris Leading Hunt by Over 2:1 in Final ConHome Poll

Not much to celebrate for Hunt in what was meant to be the final ConHome members’ survey before ballots go out – except many ballots have gone out already. He trails Boris by more than 2:1 on just 29% compared to 67%. There’s 3.6% of Tories who still back “other”, looks like they haven’t given up hope that Rory walks again…

Judges Rule Boris Was Right, £350 Million a Week Acceptable as Gross Figure

As well as tearing apart “private prosecutor” Marcus J. Ball for his comical attempt to bring a lawsuit against Boris over the £350 million a week figure, the High Court judgment also had something very interesting to say about the £350 million figure itself. Remain leaning legal commentators have ignored this bit of the Judge’s ruling:

“The alleged offence set out in the Application for Summons is that the Claimant “repeatedly made and endorsed false and misleading statements concerning the cost of the United Kingdom’s membership of the European Union”. It appears that if the Claimant had said/endorsed a figure of £350m per week gross, or £250m per week net, there would have been no complaint.”

As Remain and Leave campaigners well know, Boris repeatedly did make it clear during the referendum that £350 million a week was the gross figure. Here he is on GMB in June 2016 explaining in detail over several minutes how £350 million a week/£20 billion a year is the gross figure while £10.5 billion a year is the net figure, he’s also explicit about the distinction on Marr and in numerous other speeches including the big BBC debate just before the referendum. Boris did exactly what the judges said he should have done for there to be no complaint. Case closed.

High Court Judgment Rips Anti-Boris Lawsuit to Shreds

In news that surprised precisely no-one without severe Brexit Derangement Syndrome, the High Court resoundingly threw out the farcical anti-Boris lawsuit brought by smarmy “private prosecutor” Marcus J. Ball last month. The full judgment has now been released and it doesn’t make pretty reading for gullible Remainers who threw their money away on the crowdfunder. Hits them right in the Marcus J. Balls…

The case only got as far as it did because of a bizarre decision by a “District Judge”, in fact a lowly magistrate at Westminster Magistrates Court who was hopelessly out of her depth. The High Court judgment is absolutely scathing of both her decision and the case put forward by Balls’ legal team:

“The error of law… led the DJ to act in excess of jurisdiction and unlawfully by deciding to issue a summons whether the ingredients of the offence were not made out and which was outside the scope of the offence.

“Further, such an error of law necessarily involves a finding that no DJ properly directing herself… could, on the material before her, reasonably have found the offence made out…

“We are entirely unpersuaded by [Ball’s] argument…

“No authority was shown to us suggesting that the offence can be or has been equated to bringing an office into disrepute or misusing a platform outside the scope of the office.”

The judges then address the issue of whether the prosecution was vexatious. Ball hilariously tried to claim that his prosecution wasn’t politically motivated and went round deleting his old videos and websites in a vain attempt to cover-up the fact that he was indeed a massive Remoaner desperately trying to stop Brexit.

Unsurprisingly this didn’t fool the judges who list an entire catalogue of Ball’s bluster and make clear that they would have quashed the case on the vexatious grounds vexatious anyway, even without the serious legal flaws they had already identified. Amusingly they even include the interview where Ball said his “biggest responsibility” was to raise over £2 million as he had “run out of personal credit card and bank overdraft funding”. Ouch.

Incredibly, Ball is still saying that he wants to appeal the ruling despite his crushing defeat. Remainers surely can’t be stupid enough to give him yet more funding for his self-deluding fantasies… can they?

Johnsons Removal Van Parks Outside Gove’s Office

A Johnsons removal van was this morning spotted parked up outside Gove’s Department for Environment, Food, and Rural Affairs. That would be particularly vindictive..

Whitehall Mega-Merger Boris Story Rubbished

Guido has long been a fan of slimming down the vast amount of government waste that emanates from Whitehall, even he was a little taken aback by the Telegraph’s front page story that Boris was supposedly planning to slash over half of the Cabinet roles and merge several huge Government departments together. The number of Cabinet posts would apparently be cut from 26 to just 12, with major departments including Work and Pensions, Justice and Transport reportedly set for the chop. Unfortunately it seems that someone was freelancing and speaking only for themselves…

Damian Green was confronted with the plan on Newsnight last night and reacted incredulously. Team Boris have, alas, firmly rubbished any suggestion that it came from them. The Telegraph’s own article merely cites various MPs who now support Boris who have expressed a preference for merging various Government departments, it’s a pretty major leap from there to presenting it as official Boris policy.  Liz Truss as BEIS minister might be up for closing that department…

Annual Deficit is 5 Times the Size of EU’s Annual Bill

Jeremy Hunt and Boris Johnson are throwing spending commitments around like confetti to win votes. Fiscal Phil Hammond has been roused from the Treasury to warn

“We have to live within our means and people have to be honest about the consequences of either spending more money or of cutting taxes.

[…] Read the rest

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Quote of the Day

Boris responds to Tusk…

“I don’t want a No Deal Brexit but I say to our EU friends if they don’t want No Deal they have got to get rid of the backstop from treaty. If Donald Tusk doesn’t want to go down in history as Mr No Deal Brexit then I hope this point will be borne in mind by him too.”

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