Star comment: PM running out of friends and time

Mr Johnson's repeated denials lack any shred of credibility.

Boris Johnson
Boris Johnson

Does anybody still believe Boris Johnson? The man who refused to answer questions about whether or not he attended a party thrown for 100 people in his own back garden appears to be in big trouble.

The Conservative Party is being sullied by one of its own and, with the nation in lockdown, his own back yard was used for a Bring Your Own party.

It is inconceivable that Mr Johnson knew nothing of it. His repeated denials lack any shred of credibility.

Truth in politics is important. Politicians make mistakes and mislead. They spin and are selective. But few tell out and out lies.

Trump did it. He lied about Joe Biden’s election victory. He lied about his involvement in the near-sacking of Capitol during an attempted coup.

Now questions are being asked about Boris Johnson. His own party members believe him to be a serial liar and the evidence does not look good.

We are in uncharted waters. We should be able to trust our politicians. Many opposed Thatcher, but they understood what she stood for.

Likewise Major, Blair, Brown, Cameron, May – on the whole we thought they could be trusted.

The danger for Boris Johnson is that he is now seen as untrustworthy – that, like Trump, he believes he can lie his way out of trouble.

Public trust is important. If we do not believe the Prime Minister over a back garden party, if we do not trust him over lockdown, if we think he believes there to be one rule for the people and another for the elite, can we trust him?

Mr Johnson is running out of friends and out of time.

As attention is again turned to Boris Johnson’s behaviour, the true cost of Covid is laid bare.

More than 175,000 people in the UK have had coronavirus recorded on their death certificate since the pandemic began.

The new figures are stark – there were 57,896 deaths in the first wave, 96,022 in the second and 22,117 deaths so far in the current third wave.

That figure would undoubtedly have been higher had the nation not observed a lockdown. It would have probably been lower had we locked down earlier and certainly there are people dying now because they have refused to be vaccinated.

Mistakes were inevitably made. In an evolving situation we cannot expect ministers to get it right all the time. The British public can accept that.

But different rules for those in power as the rest of the nation suffers? That is another matter entirely.

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