Boris Johnson 'Will Come Back' As Tory Leader, Predicts Former Party Chairman

Exclusive: Jake Berry says the former prime minister is the "Conservative Party’s mistress", the "tempting other woman".
Aaron Chown - PA Images via Getty Images

Boris Johnson “will come back” despite having “bottled” his last bid to return as prime minister, a former chairman of the Conservative Party has said.

Jake Berry said the former PM was the “rubber ball of politics” who would keep “bouncing back for more”.

The MP for Rossendale and Darwen served as party chairman during Liz Truss’ brief period in office.

In an interview for Matt Forde’s Political Party podcast in central London on Monday evening, Berry said: “I think Boris will come back. I wouldn’t say when. I think he will come back.

“He’s a bit like the Conservative Party’s mistress - something he knows about. The tempting other woman. The king over the sea.”

He added “when we are desperate” Tory MPs would want Johnson to return as leader.

“I just think - knowing my Conservative colleagues in parliament - there will come a point when they go: ‘yeah but if he comes back I might keep my job,’ he said.

Nadine Dorries, the former culture secretary and ally of Johnson, last week said the former PM would be back in “10 years or 10 months”.

Berry also said Johnson “bottled it” when he decided not to take the last leadership contest to a vote of the party membership.

“In two out of three [leadership races] he bottled it, maybe that speaks to his character,” he said.

Rishi Sunak sacked Berry as party chairman when he took over from Truss as Tory leader and prime minister last month.

Berry has been outspoken ever since, including publicly criticising home secretary Suella Braverman for breaching government security rules.

“Once you’ve been party chairman you know where the mass graves are,” he said last night.

“That’s why you rarely get party chairman shoved immediately back onto the backbenches.”

Asked whether he would rather serve in Sunak’s cabinet or appear on I’m A Celebrity, as Matt Hancock is, Berry said he was happy where he was. “No sheep vaginas need to be eaten to be a backbencher,” he said.

Matt Forde’s fortnightly West End residency continues with upcoming guests including Rachel Reeves on the 5 December and Emily Maitlis & Jon Sopel on the 23 January. Tickets at


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