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‘Honest’ Boris Johnson looks screwed

Secondorris johnson Is an honest man. This can be seen in the number of times he declares his honesty.In his written submissions to the committee CongressmanThe word “honesty” came up in one form or another about 20 times in an inquiry into whether he intended to mislead Parliament about the Partygate issue. During the three-hour hearing on March 22, he offered more honesty, even being “candid” at one point. Nothing says honesty like declaring your honesty more than 20 times in two days.

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Mr Johnson first came to national attention in the bbc A comedy show called “I have news for you.” Those episodes look more like a prophecy now: Privilege Committee, applause. It was all there: the hair; the rants; the allegations of misconduct. And of course, honesty. Asked about the alleged crime, he replied: “Honestly, I don’t remember.”

It didn’t matter then. He’s so funny, so blond, and so charming.As the presenter of the show said at the time: “Everybody’s gonna fall in love with you.” Much of the UK did – as a Congressman, then as mayor of London, then all the way to Downing Street. Mr Johnson also loved the country so much that he became the first British prime minister of an unknown number of children.

The bill now appears to be drawing to a close. Committee hearings are another panel, another show. But the “did I get you a pixelated photo” mood was less pleasant. Drunk Downing Street parties during lockdown have been dubbed the Partygate scandal. But the atmosphere at the hearing was pure hangover. Mr Johnson’s mood alternates between irascibility (“total bullshit”, he spits at one point) and the kind of repentant abstinence after an overindulgence. One man who once said he loves cake as much as he eats it emphasized that at his 2020 birthday party, “the cake was always in a Tupperware box.”

Mr Johnson did attempt a little kindness: He spoke of “electric fields” and “cluttered corridors”. But his audience is less interested in the sprawling hallways than in pages 30, 40, and 41 of the evidence packet: can he refer to them? On top of that, they showed him the photos – a whole embarrassing set of appendices, along with bottles of wine and crisps, and regrettable takeaways on silver platters.

From all this, Mr Johnson has other regrettable takeaways. If the committee goes against him, it could start a process that ends with him leaving parliament. But whatever the verdict, he looks screwed. On the day he dodged questions about alcohol and trestle tables, Congressmans ratified the Northern Ireland deal negotiated by Rishi Sunak. He has failed in the polls; his chances of reaching the top of politics again are slim. If he’s being honest with himself, he’ll probably admit it.

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