Five reasons it might not be so bad to have Boris as Mayor after all

UPDATE April 2022. I’m leaving this up, although it’s obviously a bit embarrassing (and wrong – Johnson ultimately served two terms as Mayor).

1. The Mayor doesn’t have much to do anyway. He may have an £11B budget but it’s really only half a job. New Labour deliberately hobbled the Mayor’s office from the beginning by retaining control of everything important at the centre and providing no direct tax raising powers. The remarkable thing about Ken’s tenure has been how much impact he’s been able to have with control of public transport and bugger-all else.

2. He’s funny. He is funny isn’t he?

3. He’ll be a one-term Mayor. Nothing he’s proposed is achievable within budget. He’s backing away from the Routemaster idea (which has been authoritatively rubbished). Central Office cagily supported Boris but not his policies. With all the big reforms already firmly entrenched Boris will struggle to make an impact. As budgets rocket and policies evaporate disillusionment will set in.

4. Cameron will cut him loose. He may be better behaved now but you can’t innoculate a boob like Boris against gaffes. Can it be long before he alienates bus drivers or pensioners or people who live in Penge?

5. He’ll get bored. Boris evidently has the attention span of a nine year-old boy. As his concentration lapses he’ll drift off. Pretty soon he’ll forget where he works and after a year or two Londoners will be able to pick someone else.


  1. Yes, Boris is funny and that’s a quality that seems to be lacking in almost all politicians. Either it was never there in the first place or it’s been beaten out of them by the fickle press and unforgiving electorate.

    British politics has been dull for a long time now. Westminster moves at glacial pace, tinkering with a penny on tax here, a sneaky stealth tax there.

    Boris breaks the mould with his frankness, honesty and humour. He is a maverick and maybe that’s just what London needs.

    Good luck to him.

    (p.s. Boris, would you enforce the train companies to allow bikes on trains please?)

  2. Well, I see your point James, but according to the election results Boris is approximately 140,000 votes more representative than Ken Livingstone and, to be honest, that’s good enough for me…

  3. Fair enough. I think the Tories (and the Evening Standard) got their voters out. And Boris would struggle to understand the lives of anyone in my Road. But I’ll be very happy to be proved wrong.

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