DAILY MAIL COMMENT: Only Starmer gains from this clueless plot
Military planners will tell you that before embarking on any major campaign, you must focus sharply on two things – the precise objective and the likely consequences of your actions.
The gimcrack alliance of Tory MPs moving against Boris Johnson may be certain about the first of these. As to the second, they are either clueless or simply don’t care.
A loose affiliation of disaffected Remainers, attention seekers, has-beens and never-weres, the rebels have little in common beyond a burning desire to defenestrate their leader. But what then?
Instead of concentrating on the real issues facing the country, the party would be plunged into a rancorous and debilitating succession crisis.
The only beneficiary of this ham-fisted coup attempt is Sir Keir Starmer
Worse still, there is no obvious candidate to take the helm – certainly not one likely to win the next election. All potential successors, decent though they may be, have glaring flaws or drawbacks.
Could Jeremy Hunt (derided by Tory critics as ‘Theresa May in trousers without the charisma’) galvanise Red Wall voters?
Would Rishi Sunak’s extreme wealth not jar in the teeth of a cost of living squeeze?
Liz Truss, Ben Wallace and Nadhim Zahawi are undoubtedly energetic and talented but untested at the highest level. The Tobias Ellwood tendency, meanwhile, would drag us back into the EU.
The truth is that Boris Johnson is by a country mile the best person to lead the Tory government and the country at this time. Set aside the Partygate pantomime and just look at what he has achieved.
He rescued the nation from political quagmire, got Brexit done, routed Corbynism and won a landslide victory on a One-Nation Conservative ticket which he can still deliver.
Having won in 2019, he was faced with an unprecedented global pandemic.
Mistakes were made and we mourn every Covid death. But thanks to the vaccine miracle and strong economic support, Britain’s outcomes compare well with the rest of the developed world.
Unlike any of his potential successors, Boris is also a proven winner. Despite a relentless campaign of Brexit-inspired vilification from Labour, the BBC and Sky, voters warm to him.
He is not a machine politician. Outside the metropolitan bubble that is a large part of his charm.
The only beneficiary of this ham-fisted coup attempt is Sir Keir Starmer. Wooden and blustering though he is, there is a real chance the Beergate hypocrite could acquire the Downing Street keys by default.
Labour’s chances of winning an overall majority are vanishingly small. But if the Tories implode, they could let in a nightmare coalition of Labour, Lib Dems, Scottish Nationalists, Greens and the rest of the deluded and dangerous Left.
If you think Boris has failings, just wait to see what havoc that lot would wreak. The break-up of the UK, the death of Brexit, genuflection to wokery and economic catastrophe are just one bad decision away.
Do the rebels really want that on their conscience? There are probably still more than two years to the next election. In that time, the Tory party must show it is a coherent political force which can be trusted with another five years of government.
The voters hate division and won’t elect a party paralysed by civil war.
So instead of undermining their leader like self-indulgent children, the mutineers should grow up and get behind him. For all our sakes.
- For 70 years, the Queen has put love of country and public service above all else. And, as the last four days of Platinum Jubilee celebrations have shown, the people love her for it. For an object lesson in the virtue of loyalty, the Tory rebels need look no further.
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