Published On: Sat, Aug 31st, 2019

Respect Boris Johnson or nothing will get done, says ex-No 10 adviser GILES KENNINGHAM | Politics | News

Despite the precarious political situation they’ve demonstrated the power of incumbency. And yes they’ve taken no prisoners. But all successful governments must be respected and have authority otherwise nothing will get done.

Unlike the previous regime, they’ve created their own reality – shaping and not following events. Whitehall only works when there is a sense of momentum and direction, otherwise the bureaucracy takes over. For too long under Theresa May the default position of the day was to maintain the status quo, not radically reform.

We are living through one of the most disruptive times in modern history and government’s must be agile enough to respond accordingly. Now without doubt civil servants have complete clarity on Number Ten’s agenda.

The blizzard of domestic announcements has been in marked contrast to the Labour party who have lacked energy and dynamism. Whilst laudable, their most substantive policy announcement over the summer around an animal welfare manifesto, does not amount to a plan for a country at such a critical juncture. They don’t look like a government in waiting. What they have shown is shameless opportunism taking more positions than the Kama Sutra on Brexit.

Corbyn’s attempt at pushing the idea of a unity government has been laughable. Despite a large anti no deal coalition no one could stomach him as leader, leaving Labour scrambling around offering up questionable alternatives such as Keir Stammer and Harriet Harman.

Whether we leave the EU with a deal will be a high wire act going to the eleventh hour. But it’s not a zero sum game and the EU have skin in the game. For too long we adopted a defensive and negative stance.The marked change in our approach has given us a fighting chance and quite rightly piled pressure on the EU to compromise.

All government’s have a finite shelf life. And the energy and zeal Boris Johnson has shown since becoming PM is a clear recognition of this.

By proroguing parliament he has forced the hands of his opponents laying the ground for a “people versus parliament” election putting his opponents on the back foot. Whatever happens over the next couple of months he will have given it 100 percent.

Giles Kenningham is founder of the PR and Public Affairs agency Trafalgar Strategy

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