I suspect that this is the last time the Grand old Duke of Pork will lead his troops to the top of the hill and march them down again. He has trashed the Conservative brand, trashed Parliament and trashed the reputations of hardworking, honest members of Parliament; which is most of them. And if I hear another smug, entitled jobswerf ministerial cling-on telling us that advisors/Moggy and the chief whip should have warned Johnson that the Paterson fiasco would be about as popular as a rat sandwich I will scream for a priest, bell, book and candle.
The sewage that is being regularly pumped from Downing Street is splattering everyone. And it can only get worse. When you have a prime minister who has no principles, no judgment and no shame it will always end badly. And the end is nigh. For Johnson.
Sleaze will not ago away. Every day the press will pick on some hapless backbencher giving ‘strategic advice’ for wads of cash. Actually, I really don’t object to MPs having outside interests. It keeps them in touch with the real world. But if a company pays you one hundred grand a year they expect big bangs for their bucks. It may be totally above board, but it looks as dodgy as a Liz Truss trade deal. And in politics perception is everything.
The trouble is that you can never eradicate lobbying in politics. In many ways you shouldn’t try because if the government is going to do something which has the potential to severely damage jobs in an industry MPs need to be briefed. But to be paid vast sums of money for their trouble? It stinks. I thought that the old culture of former ministers being entitled to fill their boots was long dead. How wrong I was.
And what about dear old Cox? I really don’t begrudge him earning a fortune at the bar. I do not criticise his choice of clients. But there comes a time when one wonders why he bothers with Parliament at all. It seems a distraction to a busy practice. I doubt whether he will trouble Parliament at the next election.
If Johnson had any sense he would snuggle up to the men in grey suits as they will determine when to knock on his door with the gift of a bottle of scotch and a pearl handled revolver. Instead, he has publicly trashed Sir Graham Brady and threatened to put in one of his own stooges as chairman of the 1922 committee. This is mortally foolish. But it is the way Johnson operates. If Parliament displeases him abuse the Royal Prerogative. If the judiciary lawfully criticise him, cut them down to size. And as for the Marxist BBC, well, they are on borrowed time. Mr Putin must be a fan.
Johnson really has to go. Quickly. It can’t be long before Brady receives the requisite number of letters to trigger the process. The Boris experiment has to end before the government and the party falls apart. This corrupt, venal, greaser and chancer must be exorcised from Number 10 as soon as possible. He has shamed us all. Decency, competency and honesty in politics must be restored.