Social media was abuzz with reaction following a ‘Prince Andrew-esque’ interview with Dominic Cummings on the BBC last night.
The former de facto chief of staff in No 10 said he had found Mr Johnson to have “hopeless” traits after working with him during the 2016 Brexit referendum, but agreed after he entered Downing Street three years later to assist him.
But Mr Cummings, who left No 10 in the autumn after a power struggle, admitted he was now working to hasten the prime minister’s demise.
Asked whether he was looking to bring about a speedy exit for Johnson from Number 10, he said: “Certainly. The sooner he goes the better, for sure.”
In the hour-long broadcast, Mr Cummings said he had looked to “exploit” the situation the country found itself in after Mr Johnson took power.
“I think it is terrible for the country but I keep trying to stress, you’ve got to balance up the different possibilities,” he said.
“Is that (Mr Johnson being Prime Minister) objectively a good thing for the country? No, it is obviously objectively ludicrous, that’s why I’ve made the argument repeatedly for all kinds of political change.
“From a practical matter, all our options were bad, so it was, which is the least bad option? The least bad option seemed to be, exploit the current situation to try and push certain things through and get the country into a better position.”
A network of people
Asked who was behind the decision to back Mr Johnson on the premise of securing Brexit, he replied: “Me and a network of people – some of us who did the Vote Leave campaign, some of us who did other things. A few dozen maybe.”
Mr Cummings also revealed that he considered a coup against Mr Johnson only “days” after the 2019 poll – during which he had helped him secure one of the largest general election wins in decades – due to fears the Conservative Party leader’s then-girlfriend, Carrie Johnson, was trying to oust Vote Leave personnel.
“Before even mid-January we were having meetings in Number 10 saying it’s clear that Carrie (Johnson) wants rid of all of us,” he said.
“At that point we were already saying by the summer either we’ll all have gone from here or we’ll be in the process of trying to get rid of him and get someone else in as prime minister.”
Social media was abuzz with reaction this morning, with reports that one government source said the interview was on par with Prince Andrew’s infamous chat with the BBC.
Here’s what people had to say:
🚨 | NEW: Government source on the interview:— Politics For All (@PoliticsForAlI) July 20, 2021
It was “Prince Andrew level”
Nearly every single thing Cummings has said, I said three years ago when I blew the whistle. And the journalists that have been beaten over and over again by this country’s political class. Lauded as conspiracy theorists and charlatans. By the same people performing outrage now.— Shahmir Sanni (@shahmiruk) July 20, 2021
For those too weary to have bothered, a summary of Cummings interview.— Brendan May (@bmay) July 21, 2021
“Boris is a cretin; I’m a genius. I put him in power then immediately tried to remove him. I hate his wife. Everyone except me’s a moron. People are mad to think the Brexit I pushed is a good idea.”
Listening to Dominic Cummings— Richard Coles (@RevRichardColes) July 21, 2021
fascinating interview. It’s like someone who plays video games all day who thinks he is talking to people who play video games all day too.
Dominic cummings after doing a shit on a dogs head- ‘I think its terrible that theres a shit on that dogs head’— alistair green (@mralistairgreen) July 20, 2021
Dominic Cummings smirking as he’s confronted with the fact that Turkey was not on the brink of joining EU in 2016, contrary to Vote Leave campaign pic.twitter.com/vYrQX4Nh02— Jim Pickard (@PickardJE) July 20, 2021
It is quite ironic that two of the people most responsible for putting Boris Johnson into 10 Downing Street – Cummings and Kuenssberg – combine for an interview ‘revealing’ quite what a disastrous thing they created by putting him there.— Paul Bernal (@PaulbernalUK) July 20, 2021
Dominic Cummings oversaw a campaign that committed the biggest case of election fraud in modern British history.— Carole Cadwalladr (@carolecadwalla) July 20, 2021
He has never been asked a single question about his role in this. Once again, the record stands. https://t.co/GzUH4ChAxA