In the United Kingdom, a clan war in the entourage of Boris Johnson

Boris Johnson, in the House of Commons, London, November 11.

The United Kingdom probably did not have enough of a second pandemic wave (the 50,000 death mark from Covid-19 has just been sadly crossed), nor of a post-Brexit agreement to complete in the days ahead. come to avoid a “no deal” … On Wednesday 11 November, the divisions that had been smoldering for months in the heart of Boris Johnson’s government exploded into the open, after the resounding resignation of Lee Cain, the Prime Minister’s director of communication, faithful of the faithful, very close to the controversial special adviser Dominic Cummings and essential cog of the “Vote Leave”.

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Lee Cain? Before he made the “front page” of the media across the Channel in recent hours, most Britons had probably never heard of this forty-something, ex-journalist at Daily Mirror and obscure adviser to the agriculture ministry before joining Mr Johnson, when the latter was still Theresa May’s foreign minister. However, his departure is very significant and has stirred up the entire London politico-media sphere. “Cain was in charge of communications for the Johnson government. But it is clear that with the policies implemented, communication is one of the biggest failures of the first year in power. [de M. Johnson] “, insisted on Twitter, Thursday, November 12, Sebastian Payne, journalist at Financial Times, one of those who have most precisely exposed the dysfunctions of Downing Street.

The spark that caused Mr. Cain’s departure apparently comes from an article in the Times, earlier this week, which recounted his promotion as Mr Johnson’s chief of staff for granted. The news created a stir in the government, within the Conservative parliamentary group and even in those close to Mr Johnson. Carrie Symonds, his partner (and ex-director of communications for the Tory party), would have said all the bad things she thought about this appointment. Like Allegra Stratton, a seasoned political journalist (past Guardian, BBC and ITV News), recently chosen by Mr Johnson to become the new ‘face’ of Downing Street and host a daily press conference from early 2021.

Frequent hiccups in recent months

An avid brexiter, Mr. Cain was renowned for his harshness and low propensity for teamwork. Is he the only one involved? In any case, the Prime Minister’s communication has multiplied the hiccups in recent months. Leaks in the media were frequent and damaging: at the end of October, the containment due to the second epidemic wave was announced by ITV star journalist Robert Peston before MPs were made aware, and even before, according to some reports, the Prime Minister had made a final decision. Downing Street’s reluctance to respond to repeated calls from Manchester United young prodigy Marcus Rashford to tackle child poverty have also portrayed a disastrous government in lack of humanity.

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