Why I went to No10 in summer 2019
‘Character is Destiny’: normal mode, self-aware mode and Carrie mode Boris
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‘Character is destiny’, Heraclitus.
‘The trouble about politics is that you can never be certain when your policy has been correct’, Bismarck.
Many have asked me versions of the question: if you knew Boris was so hopeless why did you go to No10 and/or why did you help create then win the 2019 election?
Some pundits have suggested I’m an idiot because I didn’t understand Boris’s character until late 2020.
I and my team worked with Boris in the referendum. Some of us worked with him, officially or unofficially, between the referendum and summer 2019. We knew his skills and his weaknesses. We knew he was, in any objective sense, unfit to be PM. We also knew that he knew too, since he’d told us.
On 24 June 2016 in Vote Leave HQ, just after Cameron had resigned, Boris pulled me into the odd little room where the ‘campaign within the campaign’ was run. What now? Boris told me with a laugh, ‘Obviously it’s ludicrous me being PM — but no more ludicrous than Dave or George, don’t you think?’ I agreed and reminded him of the main elements of the deal we’d agreed with Gove about what to do next.
But the question facing us in summer 2019 was not: ‘is Boris fit to be PM?’.
It was: ‘should we a) try to help him solve the constitutional crisis, if necessary by winning an election, or b) leave the whole thing alone, knowing that without us the Conservative Party, being what it is, will probably fail to solve the problem and cause a second referendum, Corbyn as PM and maybe its own destruction?’
The Hollywood ‘25 words or less’ version:
Corbyn + second referendum = disaster. Constitutional crisis + Boris = chance to improve science, defence, Whitehall and more.
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