School of Politics and International Relations

99.86% of us didn’t have a say on Boris Johnson becoming Prime Minister

24 July 2019

Boris Johnson has been elected as prime minister by 92,000 people who are predominately male, white, middle-class pensioners. Politics Professor Tim Bale said: “The average member will be a man, in his late 50s, will be white British, will live in the south of England and be comfortably off. They are certainly more comfortably off than most people and certainly not representative in terms of ethnicity. In the UK some 15 per cent of people come from ethnic minority backgrounds whereas only 3 per cent of those in the Conservative party do.’ Professor Bale said that there has been a hardening of attitudes against the EU by grassroots Tories in the last few years. He added: “There is a considerable difference between the party membership and the population as a whole. Surveys show only a quarter of voters would leave without a deal but two-thirds of party members prefer the option of no-deal. We had Theresa May saying ‘no-deal is better than a bad deal’. Then you had ‘celebrity politicians’ like Jacob Rees-Mogg and Boris Johnson talking about no-deal. That has definitely had an impact on the views of Conservative party members.”

More »