Thursday, 28 October 2010
And so it begins...
Boris Johnson and David Cameron went to Eton together, they both went to Oxford, were in the Bullingdon Club at the same time, and they were in Michael Howard's Shadow Cabinet together. However, you would be wrong to think that this makes them friends.
The rivalry between the two men has been much documented and at the same time remained in the shadows, never overtly coming out in public, there have just been suggestions of its existence here and there. This has made it one of the most tantalising political stories of the moment.
I predict that Boris Johnson's description of the government's housing policy as 'Kosovo-style social cleansing' is just the opening skirmishes in a much longer battle between the Mayor of London and the Prime Minister.
Some of this was inevitable, Boris Johnson will be fighting for re-election in less than 18 months, and he needs to separate himself from the government. Mr. Johnson knows people tend to vote against the party of government in mid-term, especially one which is rising taxes and cutting public services. As a result, the Prime Minister will probably tolerate these differences of opinion - for now.
In the meantime, I'm guessing the Mayor will enjoy snipping at his old schoolmate and it is probably are foreshadow of Conservative Party conflicts to come.