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Comic Folk React To Whatever Is Going On With Boris Johnson Right Now

Recently, the British public has seen some changing and competing versions of events in government regarding what Boris Johnson MP, Prime Minister of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, did or did not know about charges of sexual groping charges against his deputy Chief Whip. With government representatives and Ministers giving one version, then having to contradict themselves. As a result, today, we have had several resignations from the government, including two of the most senior positions in the country, Sajid Javid MP, Secretary of State for Health, and Rishi Sunak MP, Chancellor Of The Exchequer, though for different reasons. Many believe Boris Johnson will have to resign as Prime Minister, but there is no method available right now to force him out. Instead, it is just an attempt to bring the pressure of embarrassment and expectation upon him. Anyway, a few comic book and adjacent creators (mostly) in Britain have been sharing their thoughts. And most people seem to be of a similar mind.

Boris Johnson Cartoon by Rich Johnston
Boris Johnson cartoon by Rich Johnston

Gary Frank: We seem to be approaching the point when they stab him. When they thrust their pearls forward to be clutched before the cameras. When they pretend to be suddenly aghast at the stuff that they've known about and lied about for years.

Mike Collins: Now Sunak. BOOM

Gary Erskine: Javid then Sunak. Smart money on Gove next, surely?

Rob Williams: Incidentally, f-ck Javid & Sunak with their "in good conscience" bullshit. They backed this nasty chancer throughout. They knew exactly what he was.

Tony Lee: I literally walked away from the computer for ten minutes. What the hell? They're pressing the big red 'dump Boris' button, right?

Gary Erskine: No. 10 is officially the Big Brother House right now on multiple eviction night.

Rob Williams: You'd think this would finally bring Boris down but he's created a reality where he blatantly lies to the harm of myriad others and yet survives. So who knows…

Tony Lee: Bloody hell. Javid, Sunak both resigning – both trying to work out how to challenge without looking like the lickspittles they are. Gove and Dorries should follow, but won't. Unless Dorries does it by mistake and Gove sees an opportunity. May you live in interesting times.

Alex Paknadel: I hope he throws a proper toddler tantrum in PMQs tomorrow. I hope he hangs on long enough to show the entire country who and what he is… I'm really glad the drain's about to be unblocked, but I'm also terrified that a monster's about to crawl out.

Mark Russell: Monster… or friend? Seems like that's up to you.

Alex Paknadel: Unfortunately it's up to the members of the Conservative party. Around 200,000 people will select our next Prime Minister.

Mark Russell: Oh, I see. You were speaking metaphorically. I thought there was an actual drain involved.

James Goss: Every other country, please don't have any awful news today. Just let us enjoy this. Mum having trouble following this. She quite likes Boris at the moment. But doesn't like sexual assault in the workplace. But doesn't like the gays. So she just groans a bit then brightens up whenever Lord Heseltine appears… Update: Mum has gone to bed early in disgust. Dad has awarded himself an extra donut for the occasion.

Valerie D'Orazio: Whelp, Boris Johnson may be out of a job soon & Joe Rogan just threw Trump under the bus.

Joel Morris: They keep saying "of course, Boris delivered Brexit" and I imagine they mean in the sense that a courier "delivers" something when they leave it in your brown waste bin.

Andrew Hickey: Anyone who thinks "Johnson *has* to go now", though, is deluding themself. Johnson will continue in the post unless and until forced out. I'm not sure even losing the Tory leadership would make him go. (There is, after all, no law saying that the Prime Minister has to be the leader of the largest party, or even an MP). He will *probably* go if the 1922 Committee change their rules to allow a second vote of no confidence. More likely in my mind he'd call a snap election at that point — or threaten one to quell the backbenches.

Andrew Wheeler: Well, who could ever have predicted that Boris Johnson would be such an amoral, scheming, un-serious prime minister? It's a surprise to us all…. There is a dependable consistency in the sort of people who get get an opportunity to "rise to meet the moment" and the sort of people dismissed as "risks"… Boris is on the phone to Volodymyr Zelenskyy right now. "If I do resign, we can still be best chums, right?"

PJ Holden: Currently walking round ikea almost giddy with excitement at the thought of boris going. I realise it's like they're chopping off an arm to save the body, but I'll enjoy this part if nothing else.

Chris Weston: It's like weird version of "127 Hours" only with a trapped knob that needs hacking off…

Rik Worth: So how many people have quit? Five? (So far)

Kieron Gillen: You can imagine your own meme text labels if you want.

Comic Folk React To Whatever Is Going On With Boris Johnson Right Now
The death of Boris Johnson in Once & Future King

So what happens now? Boris Johnson has been beset by scandal this year, much of it regarding trust in his telling the truth, from Partygate to losing elections, and his own MPs calling for a vote on him remaining Prime Minister, which he won but with a third of his MPs voting against him. In Britain, we don't elect a Prime Minister; we vote on a local representative, our MP, and the largest group of MPs form a government with a leader the party has chosen. But if the party decides their leader should no longer be Prime Minister, by whatever method they use, a new leader – and Prime Minister – is appointed. It will take until the next General Election for the electorate of the country to have a say. Sometimes the government will choose to trigger a General Election when a new Prime Minister is appointed, but there is no compulsion to do so. Boris Johnson could quote simply rough it out. The Conservative Party, under current rules, can't force a challenge for another year.

Well, Rishi Sunak MP resigned as Chancellor over a clash of political priorities rather than the issue of trust. It is believed that Sunak is not in favour of tax cuts, and Johnson may well try to win the favour of the MPs into whose hands he has placed his future by promising tax cuts that the Chancellor denied him to their constituents as a way of saving their seats when a General Election finally comes round.

But tonight, Boris Johnson has had to find a new Chancellor and Secretary of State for Health – Nadhim Zahawi MP and Steve Barclay MP – while others may still be resigning around him. I remember the buzz in the air when Margaret Thatcher was being ousted by the Conservative Party, and it does seem to have the same vibe. But, with Boris, we have been here before. He does have the ability to stick around far longer than anyone else might suspect, and shame is not really an emotion he is troubled by.

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Rich JohnstonAbout Rich Johnston

Founder of Bleeding Cool. The longest-serving digital news reporter in the world, since 1992. Author of The Flying Friar, Holed Up, The Avengefuls, Doctor Who: Room With A Deja Vu, The Many Murders Of Miss Cranbourne, Chase Variant. Lives in South-West London, works from Blacks on Dean Street, shops at Piranha Comics. Father of two. Political cartoonist.
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