16th Sep 2012 7:16pm | By Laura Chubb
“BoJo for PM!” isn’t the sort of thing anyone expected to hear said seriously, but an alarming number of stories flying around lately suggest it’s a growing – and straight-faced – sentiment.
A recent survey by YouGov found 42 per cent of people favour Labour over the 31 per cent who back the Conservatives – but make BoJo leader of the latter and Tory approval leaps to 38 per cent, putting the party neck-and-neck with the opposition.
The mayor of London has also been forced to deny a plot, allegedly hatched with Tory MP Zac Goldsmith, that would let the mop-top back into parliament and oust David Cameron as leader.
“Being mayor is the best job in British politics and it’s what I want to do,” Johnson insisted. It’s hard to swallow, however, that a man with enough ego to go on the Late Show With David Letterman and say: “I regard America as the proudest creation of London” wouldn’t fancy the prospect of being boss of Britain.
He might play up his ‘loveable buffoon’ image, but if there weren’t any ruthless ambition behind Johnson’s ‘Tim-nice- but-dim’ routine, he wouldn’t be running a world city.
Ambition alone can’t elevate BoJo to the Big Chair, though. The scariest element is the part the public is playing in helping Johnson score his political goals.
How many pro-BoJo voters know anything of his policies, compared to those who saw him dangling from a zipwire in Victoria Park and felt an affinity for a politician who made them laugh?
It’s hardly a surprise that, amid the endless scandals, disappointments and downright stupidity we’ve come to expect from the people running this country, voters are drawn to something a little more light-hearted.
The problem is that, although politics might seem like a never-ending production of tragicomic theatre, the players really do shape our lives.
Casting them isn’t something to be taken lightly.
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The media’s determined quest to morph Kate Middleton into Princess Diana rolled on in earnest this week, the Duchess’s visit to Malaysia providing ample opportunity for I-was-just-sick-in-my-mouth headlines about Prince William’s missus magically making terminally ill children smile.
According to the tabloids, one mother of a kid with leukaemia gasped of her son’s encounter with Kate: “It was as if the leukaemia had gone.” I, as most people do, like Kate Middleton – she seems a decent sort. What I don’t like, however, is the British press’s hell-bent agenda to hold her up to Diana at every turn. Why?
Because no person – not even a decent sort – can possibly live up to all this expectation.
Kate is being set up for a fall. And the topless pictures of her published in a French gossip magazine are an early warning of exactly that.