Could Boris become an MP and remain Mayor?

There is nothing to stop the Mayor also serving as an MP from 2015.

The juxtaposition of Boris Johnson's success with the Conservatives' failure means that the Mayor of London's stock is higher than ever. He is hailed by the right as proof that Tories can win (even in a Labour city like London) when they offer a distinctive, populist brand of conservatism. Boris's re-election will gift him the largest personal mandate of any European politician, bar the French president.

In their columns today, both Fraser Nelson, the editor of the Spectator, and Tim Montgomerie (£), the editor of ConservativeHome (whom I recently profiled for the NS), write of Boris as a Tory king across the water.

Montgomerie notes:

Just three months ago it was almost fanciful to imagine Boris as a future leader. The chance is still small. But he is the one senior Conservative who simultaneously appeals to core Tory voters and to a large proportion of Labour supporters.

The ruthlessness of the Conservative Party should never be underestimated. They got rid of Margaret Thatcher when MPs concluded that she was a loser. Mr Cameron has enormous skills but he must recognise the seriousness of the situation and the need to respond. Either he finds an election game-changer or the party might very reluctantly reach for the blond-coloured nuclear button.

So, could Boris become an MP in 2015 and stay on as mayor until 2016 (when his second term expires)? There is no constitutional obstacle to him doing so. Indeed, there is a precedent. After the 2000 mayoral election, Ken Livingstone remained the MP for Brent East until 2001.

One senior Conservative tells today's Independent:

He could not wear two hats for a long period but doing it for 12 months would not cause a great controversy. Tory associations in London and the Home Counties would queue up to have him as their candidate. He would say he was representing London in Parliament for a year.

Fraser Nelson names Crispin Blunt and Patrick Mercer as two MPs who would happily make way for Boris.

The Mayor has never publicly ruled out becoming an MP while remaining Mayor of London. When questioned on the subject by Prospect magazine, he "declined to comment but gave a low laugh." Should he return to parliament in 2015, it is no longer unthinkable that he could assume the reins of power midway through the second term of a Conservative-led government (Cameron has said he doesn't want to fight more than two elections) or the first term of a Conservative opposition.

Boris is that increasingly rare beast: a Tory who can win elections. As they mourn the loss of hundreds of Conservative councillors and reflect on the party's disastrous failure to win a majority in 2010, Cameron's MPs won't forget that.

Mayor of London Boris Johnson and his wife Marina Johnson arrive to cast their votes in the election. Photograph: Getty Images.

George Eaton is political editor of the New Statesman.

@Simon_Cullen via Twitter
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All 27 things wrong with today’s Daily Mail front cover

Where do I even start?

Hello. Have you seen today’s Daily Mail cover? It is wrong. Very wrong. So wrong that if you have seen today’s Daily Mail cover, you no doubt immediately turned to the person nearest to you to ask: “Have you seen today’s Daily Mail cover? It is wrong.”

But just how wrong is the wrong Mail cover? Let me count the ways.

  1. Why does it say “web” and not “the web”?
  2. Perhaps they were looking on a spider’s web and to be honest that makes more sense because
  3. How does it take TWO MINUTES to use a search engine to find out that cars can kill people?
  4. Are the Mail team like your Year 8 Geography teacher, stuck in an infinite loop of typing G o o g l e . c o m into the Google search bar, the search bar that they could’ve just used to search for the thing they want?
  5. And then when they finally typed G o o g l e . c o m, did they laboriously fill in their search term and drag the cursor to click “Search” instead of just pressing Enter?
  6. The Daily Mail just won Newspaper of the Year at the Press Awards
  7. Are the Daily Mail – Newspaper of the Year – saying that Google should be banned?
  8. If so, do they think we should ban libraries, primary education, and the written word?
  9. Sadly, we know the answer to this
  10. Google – the greatest source of information in the history of human civilisation – is not a friend to terrorists; it is a friend to teachers, doctors, students, journalists, and teenage girls who aren’t quite sure how to put a tampon in for the first time
  11. Upon first look, this cover seemed so obviously, very clearly fake
  12. Yet it’s not fake
  13. It’s real
  14. More than Google, the Mail are aiding terrorists by pointing out how to find “manuals” online
  15. While subsets of Google (most notably AdSense) can be legitimately criticised for profiting from terrorism, the Mail is specifically going at Google dot com
  16. Again, do they want to ban Google dot com?
  17. Do they want to ban cars?
  18. Do they want to ban search results about cars?
  19. Because if so, where will that one guy from primary school get his latest profile picture from?
  20. Are they suggesting we use Bing?
  21. Why are they, once again, focusing on the perpetrator instead of the victims?
  22. The Mail is 65p
  23. It is hard to believe that there is a single person alive, Mail reader or not, that can agree with this headline
  24. Three people wrote this article
  25. Three people took two minutes to find out cars can drive into people
  26. Trees had to die for this to be printed
  27. It is the front cover of the Mail

Amelia Tait is a technology and digital culture writer at the New Statesman.