'Coronavirus could still 'finish off' Boris Johnson unless he gets a grip soon'

When Boris Johnson won last year’s general election with an 80-seat majority, he must have thought his leadership was as safe as houses.

But his mishandling of the Covid-19 pandemic has changed many people’s perception of him.

Now 100 Tory MPs are threatening to rebel on Tuesday because they furiously object to the strict new system of tiers being introduced following the second national lockdown.

That means a weakened Mr Johnson must rely on Sir Keir Starmer and his Labour MPs to avoid a Commons defeat.

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer

This puts the Labour leader in a tricky position. We understand the temptation to give this rotten government a bloody nose.

But Sir Keir also realises that while Mr Johnson’s plan is flawed, to block it would leave the nation with no plan at all – and plunge the country into even deeper chaos.

The PM’s personal position is trickier. With more than one in four of his MPs against him, that is a leadership challenge waiting to happen.

The Tory rebels are demanding more evidence that tougher tiers are necessary. The nation also has a right to that information.

After Mr Johnson’s litany of errors, we need to know the economic sacrifices we are being asked to make are genuinely for the public good.

What we do know is that the departure of the worst PM in 70 years would be very much to the public good.

Mr Johnson has been laid low by Covid once.

If he doesn’t get a better grip soon, it will finish off his premiership.


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