Express.co.uk took to the streets of London on Thursday to find out voters’ views on the Prime Minister’s demise. Although many were glad to be rid of the Old Etonian, others argued that the Tories should keep him and “let him finish Brexit”.
Speaking outside the famous Cutty Sark in Greenwich, London, Alan, 75, and Jacqueline Warnes, retired from Kent, told Express.co.uk that they would not choose any of Mr Johnson’s Cabinet to replace him.
Ms Warnes said: “None of them! I’d choose Boris. Better the devil you know – be careful what you vote for.
“With Boris, quite often what you see is what you get. He’s energetic, he’s up and down the country visiting all the different people. We’ve not had that in a politician before.”
Mr Warnes said that Mr Johnson had delivered on removing the UK from the EU, he also pointed to his handling of the Covid pandemic and the furlough scheme as some of the PM’s achievements.
He said: “My understanding is he’s got to run the country for three months [until October], anything could happen. He could get back in there. I’d like to see him stay where he is. Let him finish what he did, let him finish Brexit.
“Let him finish all the other stuff he’s promised and if he doesn’t perform after two years’ time. Let the people decide.”
When asked about the 50-plus ministers who had resigned the last few days, the Warnes claimed that it was a “plot” against the Prime Minister.
Ms Warnes said: “I think it’s a plot, a backstabbing plot the same as it was with Margret Thatcher.”
Mr Warnes added: “It can’t be one minute ‘Rishi Sunak and Sajid Javid’s my mate’ and the next thing they are stabbing him in the back.”
Others were ecstatic about the news of Mr Johnson’s demise. But few knew who should replace him.
Speaking outside the Old Royal Naval Academy in Greenwich, London, Nora, who did not want to give her last name, said that Mr Johnson’s resignation was “the best thing in the world.” But she didn’t want anyone in his party or Labour to replace him – even as a lifelong Labour supporter.
She said: “Keir Starmer has had a character bypass.”
She also didn’t like Labour’s Deputy Leader Angela Rayner, whom she said had a “loud mouth”.
Speaking outside the Cutty Sark in Greenwich, London, Pablo Grant, 57, who said he was currently unemployed, said that the Prime Minister should have resigned “years ago”.
He said: “It is just disgusting, I hear things and I just can’t believe my ears. It is ridiculous and there’s no opposition anywhere.”
When asked if Labour should be running the Government he said there wasn’t much difference.
He said: “No! Not at all, who have they got? Keir Starmer? Come on, he’s no opposition really.”
Asked if he would vote in a general election today, he said: “No, absolutely not.”
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David Lewis, 75 and retired, speaking outside of the Old Royal Naval College in Greenwich told Express.co.uk that he also thinks the Prime Minister should have resigned “long ago”.
He said: “I’m happy about it. I think it should have happened a long time ago. I think he’s broken a number of parliamentary and ministerial and Government conventions as to what the PM ought to do.”
He said he didn’t know who should replace Mr Johnson, but he knew he didn’t want that person to be Michael Gove.
He said: “I haven’t kept enough information to my own mind as to who should replace, but I’m, I guess I’m concerned about the quality and the high turnover of the various people.
“For some reason or another, I have not been very interested in Michael Gove becoming Prime Minister. I think he’s a bit hardline, I suspect.”
Rachel Johnston, 65, is a psychotherapist from Northern Ireland who was “happy” to be rid of Mr Johnson.
Speaking outside of Cutty Sark in Greenwich, London she said that she “lost interest” in politics due to Mr Johnson.
She said she wouldn’t support anyone who had supported the PM and that she was neither a Labour or Tory supporter but “middle of the road”.
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Susie, 29, who works for the Federation of Trade Unions, said that she was happy that the PM had resigned. A long-term Labour supporter, she was worried about who would come next.
Speaking at the Old Royal Naval College, she said: “It’s a weird one; it doesn’t feel as amazing as it should do. Because it’s so long overdue. He’s really, he’s incredible in terms of what he’s put this country through…He’s got no moral compass whatsoever but what worries me now is who’s next? It literally terrifies me. Any of the Tories, they’re all exactly the same. They don’t care about people.”
The Prime Minister stepped down following a slew of resignations triggered by his appointment of Chris Pincher to Government Deputy Chief Whip. Mr Pincher has been accused of several counts of unwanted groping.
When it came to light that the PM knew about the allegations when he appointed Mr Pincher, Chancellor Rishi Sunak and Health Secretary Sajid Javid handed in their resignations – they were followed by more than 50 MPs in ministerial roles.
Mr Johnson finally relented and announced his resignation in a speech at Downing Street today.