Support 100 years of independent journalism.

  1. Politics
  2. Conservatives
27 January 2022

Why Sue Gray’s report might not bring down Boris Johnson

Conservative MPs prepared to give the Prime Minister another chance may outnumber the rebels.

By Ailbhe Rea

Prince Andrew has bumped Boris Johnson off most of the front pages this morning, as we enter a holding pattern in anticipation of Sue Gray’s inquiry into Number 10 parties.

The police investigation is underway and the Sue Gray report is reportedly finished, with police now poring over every word to determine whether certain publication of details could compromise their own inquiry. But as we wait for a report that contained details serious enough to meet the police’s threshold for criminal investigation, the Prime Minister’s position, strangely enough, seems the most assured it has in weeks. 

No one could be in any doubt watching yesterday’s Prime Minister’s Questions that Johnson believes he deserves to stay in position, and intends to fight to the bitter end to do so. His bullish performance is underpinned by the shadow whipping operation that has been conducted in the background, with Johnson loyalists hearing Conservative MPs’ concerns and feeding back to him, many seemingly placated by assurances of changes to his personnel and approach. While many MPs have more or less made up their minds to submit a letter when Sue Gray’s report drops, the number content to give Boris Johnson another chance could well be far higher.

Select and enter your email address Quick and essential guide to domestic and global politics from the New Statesman's politics team. A weekly newsletter helping you fit together the pieces of the global economic slowdown. The New Statesman’s global affairs newsletter, every Monday and Friday. The best of the New Statesman, delivered to your inbox every weekday morning. The New Statesman’s weekly environment email on the politics, business and culture of the climate and nature crises - in your inbox every Thursday. Our weekly culture newsletter – from books and art to pop culture and memes – sent every Friday. A weekly round-up of some of the best articles featured in the most recent issue of the New Statesman, sent each Saturday. A newsletter showcasing the finest writing from the ideas section and the NS archive, covering political ideas, philosophy, criticism and intellectual history - sent every Wednesday. Sign up to receive information regarding NS events, subscription offers & product updates.
  • 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
I consent to New Statesman Media Group collecting my details provided via this form in accordance with the Privacy Policy

Content from our partners
The cost-of-living crisis is hitting small businesses – Liz Truss must act
How industry is key for net zero
How to ensure net zero brings good growth and green jobs
Topics in this article: ,