BRUSSELS (Aftenposten): He made humming noises, compared himself to Moses, chatted about Children’s TV and messed up the speech papers.
It went completely in ball when Boris Johnson was to speak at an important business conference in northern England on Monday.
The speech appeared incoherent and messy. Several times he lost the thread and flipped feverishly through the A4 sheets. At one point, it took 20 seconds before he found his way back to where he was in the script.
– Up with your hands those who know Peppa Pig?
The British Prime Minister spent a long session talking about the Children’s TV series “Peppa Pig” – or Peppa Gris, as it is called in Norway.
– Raise your hands those who have seen the fantastic Children’s TV series. And added: – There were disappointingly few!
He himself had been with his son on an excursion to Peppa Pig Park, and thought it was a model community.
Later in his speech, when he talked about electric cars, he made humming noises and published about his time as a car journalist in the magazine GQ – a trend magazine for men.
That is why speech was important
This was the day the business community in the North of England had looked forward to with high expectations. Speech was important for two reasons:
- Now Boris Johnson was to deliver on the most important election promise: to lift northern England out of unemployment, investment drought and emigration. One of the tory party’s most important election promises was that the whole country, and especially northern England, should be lifted to a new level. “Leveling up” became an important slogan.
- This was also «payback time». The 10-point plan was to be the reward for the election winner in 2019. Then Johnson and the Conservative Party broke through the Red Wall in the north of England. The voters who had voted for Labor all their lives now gave their vote to the Blue Tories and the upper-class boy from London.
The memory of Theresa May’s loss pay
Boris Johnson’s speech is now being compared to Theresa Mays’ national assembly speech from 2017.
She lost her voice. Got cough balls. Was “assaulted” by a comedian. And the slogans fell from the wall. Everything that could go wrong went wrong. Nobody got the content. Just the mistakes.
Many were furious even before Boris Johnson arrived at the conference in South Shields, a small town outside Newcastle in the north-east of England. For the plan to invest heavily in the North of England has so far been either empty words or downscaling of large projects.
Last week it became known that the major railway investment only a fraction of what the Conservatives promised in the election campaign. Among other things, the party promised high-speed trains to Leeds. Now the plan has been scrapped. And the other major prestige project, the Northern Powerhouse Rail (NPR), is sharply scaled down compared to plan.
Boris Johnson denies breaking election promises.
But the opposition is not gracious:
– With this, Boris Johnson has deceived the voters in the North of England who believed in him. This shows that “leveling up” was again just a slogan, Labor leader Keir Starmer stated.
It has been a demanding autumn for Boris Johnson.
- Cop26, which was to be the big showcase for Global Britain, did not end in scandal, but neither did the success the British government had hoped for.
- Then a lobby scandal has ridden the party. Several well-known parliamentarians have received millions to help rich business people with access to politicians.
- The conservatives plunge in the polls. For the first time since the election, Labor is bigger than the Conservatives in the polls.
Labor leader Keir Starner has not been a success for the British Labor Party. But now Boris Johnson’s mistake is to give Labor a long-awaited boost.
Now it’s serious
But it is only when the criticism begins to come from within one’s own party, that it begins to become dangerous. And it does now.
The Guardian writes that Boris Johnson is now losing confidence within the party. They refer to anonymous conservative politicians who believe that the prime minister must now get the government back on track.
In recent weeks, he has struggled to get a majority for several major reforms, because representatives of his own party have either voted against him or refused to vote.
The pattern is well known: the Conservative Party is notorious for stabbing its own leaders in the back. Theresa May, David Cameron, John Major and Margaret Thatcher experienced it.
Should Boris Johnson be the next?