“I am responsible for everything the Government does and, of course, I assume my personal responsibility” in the electoral defeat. “Clearly the vote in North Shropshire is a very disappointing result and I fully understand the frustration of the people.” With these words, Boris Johnson He took to the press on Friday the blow suffered in the elections in this English town, adding: “I listen to what the voters in North Shropshire say and with all humility I have to accept that verdict.”
Johnson’s statements came after the result of Thursday’s vote was known, which was a major blow for the ‘premier’, and in which the public elected the liberal democrat Helen Morgan as successor to the conservative Owen Paterson, who resigned a few weeks ago due to a conflict of interest scandal after being the head of this town for almost a quarter of a century.
The ‘premier’ said he accepted that the controversy over the Christmas festivities in Downing Street during the heavy restrictions in place last year had ‘hampered’ the task of informing voters about the government’s agenda, and that in recent weeks, the people had heard a “constant litany of questions about politicians,” rather than about the issues most important to the country.
Comments of “humiliation” in the press
While the local press spoke of “humiliation” for the prime minister, several conservative parliamentarians were very critical of his management. Roger Gale he assured Sky News that the defeat should be seen as a “referendum” on Johnson’s prime ministerial position. “I thought this was very likely to happen,” he said, and pointed out that although his intention is not to “detract from the considerable victory of Helen Morgan,” the truth is that “this was not a vote for the Liberal Democrats, this was effectively a referendum on Downing Street’s performance at this time. ‘ “I’m afraid this is not a happy time for the prime minister,” he said.
Another deputy from the ‘Tory’ ranks, Geoffrey Clifton-Brown, considered that the ‘premier’ should “leave for Christmas, return in the new year, deal with these self-inflicted goals and then begin to deal with important problems for the country, as required by the electorate.”
The former leader of the Scottish Conservatives, Ruth Davidson, said on a BBC radio program that the MPs he has spoken to “are tired of the constant drama that arises from number 10 and, actually, also from the apartment number 11”, where Johnson lives with his wife and their children.
The teacher John Curtice, political scientist and polling expert, wrote an analysis in the newspaper ‘The Times’ in which he pointed out that “this result suggests that the coalition of voters inclined” to leave the EU “that gave the prime minister his majority of 80 seats in 2019 now runs the risk of falling apart. ‘
“My party has shown that conservatives can be defeated anywhere, because in all the towns and cities of our country, people are fed up and angry,” he said for his part in a column in the newspaper ‘The Guardian’ Ed Davey, leader of the Liberal Democrats. “It was not just traditional conservative voters who backed the Liberal Democrats in this by-election,” he detailed. “Once it became clear that my party was the local rival of the Conservatives, thousands of Green and Labor voters also voted for us. That is a powerful message for the progressive future of our country, and a clear path to remove Johnson from office. “