Boris Johnson warned to 'not waste' his time in Government
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The former Brexit minister, who resigned from his role last month, warned there must be “machinery changes” within the Government to win over the public in a bombshell interview. He also warned Boris Johnson must focus on rebuilding the country as Britons face surging living costs. This comes at a critical time for the Government, with the Conservative Party losing ground in a number of polls to bitter rivals the Labour Party.
Now Andrew Neil has thrown his weight behind the comments from Lord Frost and issued a warning of his own to the Prime Minister.
The veteran broadcaster said there has been “growing concern” in Conservative ranks about Mr Johnson’s “penchant for big government and high taxes”.
He said the problem for the Tory faithful is the Government “still seems determined to head helter-skelter in the wrong direction”.
From April, people throughout the country will be forced to pay more National Insurance and income tax as part of a five-year freeze on tax allowances announced by Chancellor Rishi Sunak.
Mr Neil claimed it will see 1.5million low earners expected to be captured by the basic rate of income tax and 1.2million others pulled into the higher rate – all at a time when the cost of living is surging.
He wrote for MailOnline: “So Lord Frost’s rallying cry comes at a salutary time for the Government. It also piles pressure on Johnson to change course when he’s already losing his grip on the Tory party in Parliament and the country.
“It’s easy to forget that only last autumn Johnson was still riding high in the polls, even though the grip of the pandemic was proving to be depressingly tenacious and the economy was starting to stutter.
“Then came a series of entirely unforced, self-inflicted errors.
“Last November there was the botched attempt to save the skin of former minister Owen Paterson after he had been found guilty of ‘serious breaches’ of lobbying rules, a move that looked like Tory cronyism at its worst.
“Then a series of revelations depicting 10 Downing Street as wine-and-cheese party central, while the rest of us were observing lockdown, reinforced the feeling that it was one rule for us, another for Johnson and the circle around him.
Mr Neil added: “Meanwhile, the seemingly endless saga of Downing Street’s ‘Wallpaper-gate’ reminds us that honesty and the Prime Minister are often strangers.
“None of these episodes on their own matters very much, but taken together they revived what has always been the biggest fear about Johnson, even among Tories: that he can’t be trusted – that he is cavalier with rules and the truth whenever it suits him.
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“As a result, by last month the Tory advantage in the polls had vanished, to be replaced by a consistent Labour lead – which is a substantial 16 points in the 57 Tory gains in Labour’s Red Wall, the northern seats that gave Johnson his 2019 landslide victory. His own personal ratings are in the dirt.
“The significance of all this is that, just as much more important matters start to crowd in on the Prime Minister, he is far from being well-placed to deal with them from a position of strength.”
These comments from the veteran broadcaster come after Lord Frost sent a huge warning to the Conservative Party and in particular, Mr Johnson.
He urged the Prime Minister to “trust his instincts a bit more” and warned there needs to be “machinery changes” and some different voices around the Prime Minister to ensure he gets the best possible advice.
Speaking to the Mail on Sunday, the former Brexit minister said: “The PM has a right, when he wants something to happen, for the levers that he pulls to actually produce something.
“And he has the right to the best possible advice around him.
“So I think there needs to be machinery changes and there probably need to be some different voices around him to make sure that he gets the best possible advice.
“I think we need to focus on rebuilding the nation and be proud of our history.
“We need to get the country going economically again and that means free markets, free debate and low taxes.
“People need to look at this country and think, yes, something is changing here.
“You’ve got to set the direction of travel. If we’re going to get out of this little trough and win the Election in a couple of years’ time, then we’ve got to develop that.”
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