The interesting thing about politics in the UK is that they tend to toss up unusual characters every so often, more so than even in the US, and few have been more unusual since Thatcher than Boris Johnson. He has been compared to Donald Trump, and they are alike in the less said about their personal lives the better, and in a populist appeal that propelled Johnson to being Mayor of London from 2008-2016. He is probably the wittiest Prime Minister since Winston Churchill, a hero of Johnson. Like Churchill he writes readable books and earned his daily bread from journalism. Like Churchill he has been regarded as a pariah by much of the UK establishment, as he demonstrated with comments like these over the years about his chances of ever being Prime Minister:
“I’ve got more chance of being reincarnated as an olive.” This was just one of Boris Johnson’s standard answers, when asked over the years as to whether he saw himself becoming prime minister one day.
He would often hammer home the point by claiming he had more chance of “being blinded by a champagne cork”, or “locked in a disused fridge”.
Now, the man who once claimed he was more likely to be “decapitated by a flying frisbee” than get the top political job in the land, is prime minister. Undoubtedly he’ll be very careful when popping the champagne cork to celebrate.
Churchill became Prime Minister at a time of crisis only because of the manifest failure of his predecessor Neville Chamberlain. Johnson, an advocate of Brexit, has become Prime Minister at a time of crisis only because of the manifest failure of his predecessor Theresa May, the worst Prime Minister since Chamberlain. History will record whether Johnson will be a success or a failure, but I have no doubt that however he does, his tenure will be colorful.