From being a fraud journalist to becoming Prime Minister (PM) of Great Britain, Boris Johnson has come a long way. Although he currently represents a significant power on the world stage, he does not seem to harbor the qualities expected from such a position. Johnson is an English version of Donald Trump, and that should say it all.
Like Trump, Johnson has shown a tendency to get himself into trouble. As an elitist from a wealthy family, Johnson attended Eton College with a scholarship, and continued his studies at the University of Oxford where he even became president of the prestigious debating society, the Oxford Union. On the surface he seems to be a highly-educated, respectable fellow. But as he stepped into the public spotlight, the world stumbled upon a Pandora’s Box.
Johnson was fired from his first job at The Times, discussed plans to beat up a tabloid journalist with his colleagues, allegorized same-sex marriage to polygamy and bestiality, and described Muslim women in burqas as “bank robbers” and “letterboxes”. He also appeared on a variety of television shows such as Have I Got News for You, in which he was popular for his unorthodox demeanor and offensive comments. Despite his rise in public recognition, he was forced to apologize on multiple occasions, facing the consequences for his child-like behavior. Such insensible, irreverent, and belligerent behavior should surely have been enough to discard him as a possible candidate in the elections for Member of Parliament, Mayor of London, and for Prime Minister. It surprised the world when such a gaffe-prone man-child overcame opposition to hold such power.
Notably, Brexit seems to have played a major role in securing him the position. Brexit, the term coined for the United Kingdom leaving the European Union (EU), has caused chaos in the House of Commons in British Parliament. David Cameron, the then Prime Minister, campaigned for Remain during the 2016 European Union referendum which resulted in a 52% share of the vote for Leave. In an extract from Cameron’s memoir, he wrote that Johnson based his parliament votes on what would be the “best outcome” for him. This seems to be the case, since Johnson primarily focused his campaign on delivering Brexit to “unite the country”. His political decisions have been clearly curated to better his career, essentially guaranteeing support in the elections for PM.
Such slyness shows no sign of stopping. Upon his appointment as PM, Johnson was immediately faced with a call for a vote of no confidence — a vote to remove the PM — from Jeremy Corbyn, the opposition leader. On top of that, more opponents supporting the non-Brexit legislation pushed Johnson into a corner. Rather than compromising or finding a common ground for discussion, Johnson requested a prorogation. A prorogation ends a parliamentary session and all motions that have not been answered do not progress any further. In this case, the prorogation of Parliament restricts Members of Parliament from blocking a no-deal Brexit, for which Johnson strongly advocated during his election campaign.
The Brexit deadline has been delayed several times already, and now the deadline is October 31. After the prorogation, however, it may be delayed even more to January 31, 2020. Although Johnson pledged he would deliver a no-deal Brexit this year, it doesn’t seem like it will be happening any time soon. Johnson’s poor leadership and his childish demeanor do not suit the position of a Prime Minister, especially in the times when a historically important socio-economic decision must be made. Brexit is not a light topic to be used for opportunistic purposes. Many livelihoods and international policies depend on the ultimate decision. Brexit was supposed to be a solution, but it is just causing turmoil within the time of office of three Prime Ministers already. Boris Johnson has wrangled his way to Prime Minister, blind to the consequences the country will face.