Boris Johnson finally got his dream job, becoming the UK’s Prime Minister. But, what a task he faces, the United Kingdom has never been more divided than it is now.
It isn’t only divided, it’s broken. The country finds itself stuck, not only with Brexit but in general. For three years the government has focused on leaving the EU. The cost to the country has been considerable.
Poverty has increased, with the government’s universal credit scheme squeezing the poor. Crime has become the headline grabber, with knife crime causing far too many deaths. GDP, the indicator of a country’s wealth has declined, not grown.
Of course, the pain from this has been considerable. The Tory party find themselves languishing in the polls, battered for doing nothing. The opposition is also tied up in knots over Brexit, not knowing which side to take.
Enter Boris Johnson
As I see it, Boris has several challenges ahead which his strategy needs to overcome. These are;
As much as I would rather he doesn’t, Boris has to deliver Brexit, it is what he fought his campaign on. Whether this means leaving with a no-deal or forcing a new negotiation, he has to deliver it.
Unify his Party
The Tory party is as split as the country is, such is the divisiveness of Brexit. Boris has to make the Tories electable again, this was the real reason behind Theresa May’s departure. The Tory party can see an election coming, and one they had no hope of winning. Boris has to change this and make the Tory party the preferred choice for the future.
Re-engage politics with the people
People hate politics as a result of Brexit. People are fed up of how its politicians have behaved. The people are the ones that feel the pain from how a government leads its country. With Brexit consuming everything, people are frustrated and angry. Boris has to overcome this negative mindset to politics.
The Boris Strategy
Since being appointed, Boris hasn’t stood still. His strategy crystal clear to those around him. One word describes his first three days. Decisive.
Boris assembled his cabinet of ministers, removing any sign of Theresa May and her team. His ministers are completely onside with his view of Brexit. Gone are the days of cabinet quarrels and internal fighting. This team is all for Boris and his way. For now, anyway.
His stance on Brexit and the current unapproved withdrawal agreement? Well, that’s clear as well. With the time shrinking as we get towards the 31st October, a no-deal exit is a likely outcome. Will the EU stand by and let that happen? This is the gamble Boris wants to take. It is one he has to take to correct the red lines so disastrously set out by Theresa May. If a deal is to be done, it has to be acceptable to the union.
I think in the coming weeks we will see a decisive message coming from Government, one of preparing us to leave without a deal.
The strategy though is clear, prepare to leave and see it through.
For me, this is a smart move. Calculated to send a clear message out to the country and the Tory party. It tackles two issues, that of unifying the Tory party and the country. 20,000 new police officers enable Boris to show the electorate he is listening.
It makes a great soundbite and helps tackle the knife crime epidemic the country faces. It is a 14% increase in police numbers and will make a difference.
Boris will argue he is fighting crime, which offers a great message for his party to deliver to voters. And the Tory party needs a positive message. One it can take to the electorate, should a general election take place sooner rather than later.
Will it work?
In short, I expect so. The country has become rooted to the spot. Stuck in a never-ending nightmare over Brexit. Some might say that Boris has done more for the country in his first three days than Theresa did in 3 years. Boris has shown decisive leadership, executing his strategy with haste.
He was never going to hide away, he will do his utmost to re-energise the country. To get it moving after the malaise of the last three years. I would argue it is the only way the Tory party can hold onto power. Boris knows as every Tory member does that it must fix the mess of the last three years, and get the country moving.
Every country needs leadership. Not the stubborn bull-headedness of Theresa May, but decisive positive leadership. Boris has set his stall out. Decisive, not divisive, this is the Boris strategy.