New Times,
New Thinking.

  1. Politics
22 July 2009

Rivals Johnson and Cameron in fresh divide

Conservative leadership oppose Boris Johnson on Crossrail and greater mayoral powers

By James Macintyre

Relations between Boris Johnson and his party’s leadership have reached breaking point with new and potentially damaging divisions over the mayor’s plans for London.

Behind the scenes, Tory high command has decided against three specific policy proposals that Johnson has demanded for the party’s next election manifesto. The first is Johnson’s backing for Crossrail. Tory opposition to this will infuriate City financiers, who see it as crucial to London’s future.

On this, a spokesman for the mayor told me: “There is a wide consensus around the huge importance of the Crossrail project to the London and UK economy, and construction has already begun.” So Johnson is resolute.

The second is Johnson’s plan for an estuary airport, and the third is his desire for enhanced mayoral powers. David Cameron is desperate for Johnson to stand for re-election as mayor in 2012, so his fellow Old Etonian does not return to the Commons to pursue the Conservative Party leadership that he still privately craves. Johnson faces a dilemma over whether to continue as mayor or seek a safe Tory seat.

His public attempts to undermine Cameron first emerged last August, when he flatly contradicted Cameron’s oft-repeated claim that Britain is a “broken society”. Writing in his Telegraph column, which he says provides a “chicken-feed” sum of £250,000, Johnson said: “If you believe the politicians, we have a broken society . . . what piffle that is.”

Select and enter your email address Your weekly guide to the best writing on ideas, politics, books and culture every Saturday. The best way to sign up for The Saturday Read is via saturdayread.substack.com The New Statesman's quick and essential guide to the news and politics of the day. The best way to sign up for Morning Call is via morningcall.substack.com
  • Administration / Office
  • Arts and Culture
  • Board Member
  • Business / Corporate Services
  • Client / Customer Services
  • Communications
  • Construction, Works, Engineering
  • Education, Curriculum and Teaching
  • Environment, Conservation and NRM
  • Facility / Grounds Management and Maintenance
  • Finance Management
  • Health - Medical and Nursing Management
  • HR, Training and Organisational Development
  • Information and Communications Technology
  • Information Services, Statistics, Records, Archives
  • Infrastructure Management - Transport, Utilities
  • Legal Officers and Practitioners
  • Librarians and Library Management
  • Management
  • Marketing
  • OH&S, Risk Management
  • Operations Management
  • Planning, Policy, Strategy
  • Printing, Design, Publishing, Web
  • Projects, Programs and Advisors
  • Property, Assets and Fleet Management
  • Public Relations and Media
  • Purchasing and Procurement
  • Quality Management
  • Science and Technical Research and Development
  • Security and Law Enforcement
  • Service Delivery
  • Sport and Recreation
  • Travel, Accommodation, Tourism
  • Wellbeing, Community / Social Services
Visit our privacy Policy for more information about our services, how Progressive Media Investments may use, process and share your personal data, including information on your rights in respect of your personal data and how you can unsubscribe from future marketing communications.
THANK YOU

Since then, Johnson has openly opposed opportunistic attempts by Cameron and George Osborne to attack City bonuses. Now Osborne has got his revenge by blocking the mayor’s latest ideas. Both, incidentally, see themselves as Cameron’s successor. That looks like one to watch.

Content from our partners
An innovative approach to regional equity
ADHD in the criminal justice system: a case for change – with Takeda
The power of place in tackling climate change

Topics in this article : ,