ConHome Poll: Buy Boris, Sell Osborne

Boris is well out in front in the latest ConHome Tory leadership survey, taking a 13 point lead on his closest rival. Second and third place go to Gove and Fox, two of the most vocal Eurosceptics, while Osborne slumps to fourth place on a dire 11%. According to this snapshot May and Saj are out of it. The Leavers are on the up, the Remainers are on the slide. Boris’ gamble looks to be paying off…

Boris or George? The Public Speaks

The Daily Politics has taken to the streets to ask the public who they trust most on the EU referendum, Boris or George? Boris seemed to have put in a rather good performance…

Boris on the Scaremongers

Boris tells Sun readers:

“The cheek of it — the bare-faced cheek. Do they think that we have forgotten? Look at the people now trying to scare the pants off us all about leaving the EU. They are exactly the same people who said we should scrap the Pound and join the euro… Let’s believe in ourselves again, rather than clutching the skirts of Brussels. Let us lift our eyes to the horizon and take a once in a lifetime opportunity. Ignore the scaremongers, we are bigger, better and greater than they pretend.”

Boris Ahead of Osborne with Association Chairmen and Members

Yesterday the Telegraph polled 50 Tory association heads about their choice for next leader. Of those who’ve made up their minds, Boris is backed by 46% and Osborne 31%. Today’s Times has a Yougov poll of 1005 Tory members, Boris is on 43%, well ahead of Osborne on 22%. Again, May and Sajid have slipped well of the pace after choosing to back Remain. Boris is almost twice as popular as George with members, No. 10 is slowly slipping away from the Chancellor…

Tory Grassroots Poll: Boris Beats Osborne, Remainers Sink

If it’s a straight fight between Boris and Osborne on the Tory leadership ballot paper there is only one winner. The Telegraph have polled the heads of 50 Conservative associations and Boris is the preferred choice, though almost half are undecided. May is down on four after she backed Remain, and Sajid Javid languishes with just one association head supporter after his flip flop. Tory associations back Leave over Remain by 12 points, so Boris’ bravery is paying off and the Remainers are paying the price…

How the Parties Have Changed Since 1975

EU GRAPH 5 pie

In 1975, Labour MPs thought the EEC was a bosses’ union, a capitalist conspiracy, while the Tories were overwhelmingly in favour of a common market. 41 years on and the parliamentary parties have almost entirely swapped positions…

Michael Cockerell’s short film on the 1975 referendum is well worth a watch.

Tories at War: Cameron Ridicules Boris

Labour MPs cheer the Prime Minister, slap their thighs and gleefully cry “more!” as Dave ridicules a furious Boris, who heckles “rubbish, rubbish” at his leader from the backbenches. Cameron calls Labour “his new friends” and Labour MPs invite him to cross the floor and join them.

boris_cameron_victory

It’s war…

Boris: Why I’m Backing Leave

BORXIT-RWB

Boris’ Telegraph column is out:

There is only one way to get the change we need, and that is to vote to go, because all EU history shows that they only really listen to a population when it says No. The fundamental problem remains: that they have an ideal that we do not share. They want to create a truly federal union, e pluribus unum, when most British people do not.

It is time to seek a new relationship, in which we manage to extricate ourselves from most of the supranational elements. We will hear a lot in the coming weeks about the risks of this option; the risk to the economy, the risk to the City of London, and so on; and though those risks cannot be entirely dismissed, I think they are likely to be exaggerated. We have heard this kind of thing before, about the decision to opt out of the euro, and the very opposite turned out to be the case…

This is the right moment to have a referendum, because as Europe changes, Britain is changing too. This is a truly great country that is now going places at extraordinary speed. We are the European, if not the world, leaders in so many sectors of the 21st-century economy; not just financial services, but business services, the media, biosciences, universities, the arts, technology of all kinds (of the 40 EU technology companies worth more than $1 billion, 17 are British); and we still have a dizzyingly fertile manufacturing sector.

Now is the time to spearhead the success of those products and services not just in Europe, but in growth markets beyond. This is a moment to be brave, to reach out – not to hug the skirts of Nurse in Brussels, and refer all decisions to someone else.

We have given so much to the world, in ideas and culture, but the most valuable British export and the one for which we are most famous is the one that is now increasingly in question: parliamentary democracy – the way the people express their power.

This is a once-in-a-lifetime chance to vote for real change in Britain’s relations with Europe. This is the only opportunity we will ever have to show that we care about self-rule. A vote to Remain will be taken in Brussels as a green light for more federalism, and for the erosion of democracy.

In the next few weeks, the views of people like me will matter less and less, because the choice belongs to those who are really sovereign – the people of the UK. And in the matter of their own sovereignty the people, by definition, will get it right.

Read the whole thing here.

Top Boris Adviser Hinting Out

Be brave Boris…

Tory Grassroots Campaign to Draft Boris to Lead Leave

 

Inevitably many Tory Brexiteers are calling for Boris to lead Britain out of the EU. There is no doubt that if he were so to do the referendum would be a fascinating proxy for a Tory leadership campaign. Whatever the outcome he would probably as a result stitch up the Tory leadership in a head-to-head with Osborne. The prospect of “Borxit” happening is not that high, many suspect that his reluctant blessing of a deal is part of a pre-agreed charade with Cameron…

Press release:

GRASSROOTS CALL ON BORIS TO BE BRAVE AND BACK BREXIT

SOCIAL MEDIA CAMPAIGN TO DRAFT BORIS TO LEAD LEAVE

Alex Deane, former chief of staff to David Cameron MP, said: the Conservative Party’s membership needs a champion with significant, mass appeal, political and cultural clout, to represent our dissatisfaction with the failure of the government to meaningfully deliver on its manifesto pledge of reform in our relationship with the EU.

“It is with this in mind that I urge the Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, to throw his weight behind the Brexit campaign, and help lead Britain out of a tired, fundamentally flawed, failing political union.

“Boris must surely feel the hand of history on his shoulder at this pivotal moment. His involvement in the campaign to lead Britain out of the European Union could tip the scales. Come on, Boris. Be brave. Back Brexit!”

An Ipsos MORI poll from February 2016 revealed that Mr. Johnson’s opinions on the referendum campaign are valued by 32 per cent of those polled. This is in comparison to Mr. Cameron’s opinions (44 per cent), Theresa May’s opinions (28 per cent) and George Osborne’s opinions (28 per cent) – meaning Boris’s voice is the second most important behind that of the Prime Minister.

There is a campaign site and they are running online adverts here, on Facebook and ConservativeHome. The twitter hashtag is #BeBraveBoris. Full press release here.

Mrs Boris’ Takedown of Dave’s Deal

Marina Wheeler, a top human rights lawyer who took silk last month, has written a legal takedown of Dave’s EU deal for this week’s Spectator. All the more worth reading since she is of course Mrs Boris Johnson.

“Legally… [the renegotiations] raise more questions than they answer… This ought to have been an opportunity to look at the Court of Justice of the European Union, whose reach has extended to a point where the status quo is untenable. Aside from eroding national ­sovereignty (which it does) the current situation also undermines legal certainty — which, in turn, undermines good governance. Proper reform needs to address the EU legal order, in particular the jurisdictional muscle-­flexing of the Court of Justice in Luxembourg. The new proposals do not do this. Instead, they duck the issue entirely — clearing the way for a whole new body of EU rights law.”

Boris last week implied a guarantee on British sovereignty would be enough to convince him to Remain. Mrs BoJo says the currently situation on sovereignty is “untenable” and Dave has ducked the issue…

Boris’ New Baldness-Battling Barnet

Guido has previously noted that balding Boris is losing his locks, so it is no surprise to see his hair cropped shorter and brushed forward to disguise that thinning top:

It is more flattering from above:

The age old rule in British politics is that bald men in the television age do not beat rivals with a full head of hair. Think Tony Blair versus William Hague, IDS and Michael Howard, nor can we forget Maggie versus Kinnock. In every election the slap-head loses. Could Boris’ new baldness-battling barnet be a sign that his leadership campaign is shifting up a gear?

UPDATE: A friend of Boris gets in touch:

“Don’t get too excited. Cropping shorter isn’t new Mayoral policy, it’s something he revisits every few months with the help of his Turkish barber!”

Boris and Farage Pan Dave’s Red Card

Boris ain’t convinced: “the PM is making best of a bad job, there’s still a lot more to do, a lot more to do on this”. Asked if there is any positive from Dave’s deal: “Ermmm…”

Farage meanwhile tells the European Parliament:

“the Prime Minister is saying we’ve got a red card, isn’t that wonderful? Well what that means is if a majority of parliaments in the European Union can say to Mr Juncker they don’t want one of his directives, is that a cause for celebration? I mean if 15 parliaments couldn’t stop a piece of law we would be living in a communist dictatorship”

Juncker this morning made clear that the emergency brake on immigration actually coming into effect was a pipe dream. Dave is going to get roasted by his backbenchers in the post-PMQs EU debate…

Boris: Dave’s Deal Not Good Enough

Boris gives the red card to Cameron’s red card on LBC:

“I think what would be better would be if we had a brake of our own, that we were willing to use. And that we were more willing to say, look, Britain is an independent sovereign country and we don’t agree with this particular piece of legislation or regulation and we want to stop it, and that’s what we should be able to do… What everybody would want is to see more progress and lets see where we get… I think there is much, much more however that needs to be done.”

He’s asking for the impossible with a demand for a British veto for EU regulations. He may yet sell out and still back the deal however…

Boris: Corbyn’s An “Old Stalinist” Like Putin

Boris Johnson suffered a rather telling Freudian slip talking to LBC’s Theo Usherwood today, where he referred to the Labour leader as “Jeremy Putin”. Boris quickly corrected himself before explaining that he confused them because they’re “interchangeable old Stalinists”Guido thought Corbyn’s “Senior Labour Source” was the Stalinist…

Victory! TFL Scraps Silly Uber Crackdown

Uber Wait

Victory for progress as TFL climbs down and drops the most punitive regulations imposed on taxi firm Uber. Gone is the dangerous stipulation that customers would have to wait five minutes for a ride. As is the proposal that locations of Uber cars should not be visible in the app to customers. Making private hire vehicles pay the congestion charge and raising minicab license costs is being considered instead. Boris has embraced technological progress, too:

“There were some ideas consulted upon that did not find widespread support and I think are not sensible. They’re trying to turn back the clock on technical progress, we cant disinvent the internet or apps, they’re making things much easier in our city”.

Increasing regulations on Uber was never the solution, relaxing rules for cabbies is the only sensible way to level the playing field…

Boris: “I Am Not an Outer”

boris-st-george

Stories in two newspapers this morning suggest that two so-called Eurosceptics will not in the end campaign to leave the EU. The Express claims Boris held talks with Tory MPs about leading the Leave campaign but turned the role down. They quote him as saying: “The trouble is, I am not an outer”

Quentin Letts in the Mail describes how once prominent outer Philip Hammond has gone native in the FCO, a point Guido made in June:

“He used to be a prominent Eurosceptic (indeed, his scepticism was one of the reasons he was appointed). Now he is mid-restyle. Having sensed that his own political survival may be in peril unless he sucks up to 10 Downing Street, he is turning himself into a Europhile… The Hammond of old is quickly being replaced by a Hammond who gives Europe the benefit of the doubt, a Hammond who is striving to keep Britain IN the European Union, a Hammond who with a superior lifting of the eyebrows, a tone of settled worldliness, asserts that he finds EU-sceptic position options to be unappealing. ‘Doesn’t look like a good plan to me,’ he murmured yesterday, perhaps a mite too ostentatiously, after hearing someone mention Norway’s position outside the EU. Equating Britain to Norway is a worn Europhile tactic.”

Looking at Guido’s guide to Cabinet Eurosceptics, the only three who seem dead certs to campaign to Leave are IDS, Grayling and Theresa Villers. May, Gove and Saj are all on the fence, and Cameron’s new rules gagging ministers from making pronouncements on Europe until the renegotiation is complete mean that isn’t going to change any time soon. Where is the X-it Factor?

Boris Sitting & Smiling on the Euro-Fence

Classic dissembling…

Boris on Trump

Boris Johnson on Donald Trump’s claim that there are ‘no-go zones’ for non-Muslims in London:

“Donald Trump’s ill-informed comments are complete and utter nonsense. As a city where more than 300 languages are spoken, London has a proud history of tolerance and diversity and to suggest there are areas where police officers cannot go because of radicalisation is simply ridiculous. I would welcome the opportunity to show Mr Trump first hand some of the excellent work our police officers do every day in local neighbourhoods throughout our city. Crime has been falling steadily both in London and in New York – and the only reason I wouldn’t go to some parts of New York is the real risk of meeting Donald Trump.”

Osborne Sinks to Third in Tory Leader Race

Osborne Crisis Poll

As well as having the worst October borrowing figures for six years, Osborne today slipped to third in the leadership polls among Tory voters. He is down 9% with Ipsos Mori. Boris is well ahead and even T-May is ahead of George…[…] Read the rest

+ READ MORE +



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Quote of the Day

According to the Mail, when Tory MP Marcus Fysh called Venezuela a ‘socialist experiment gone wrong’ at PMQs, Jeremy Corbyn mouthed:

“What a complete w*nker.”

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