'Wild horses won't stop Boris if he wants to run again': Rachel Johnson on former PM's possible plans to run for PM

20 October 2022, 17:51 | Updated: 20 October 2022, 18:31

Boris Johnson and Rachel Johnson
Boris Johnson and Rachel Johnson. Picture: Alamy

By Kit Heren

"Wild horses" wouldn't stop Boris Johnson if he decided to run again to be Prime Minister, Rachel Johnson has said.

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Speaking to LBC's Tom Swarbrick on Thursday, his fellow LBC presenter Rachel said that if the former Prime Minister has "a burning desire" to run again, less than four months after stepping down from the top job, he would do so.

But she warned that "there may be times to step into the fray and there may be times to step back", with the cost of living crisis looming and a difficult winter ahead - as well as the disarray the Conservative party has been thrown into in recent weeks.

Rachel Johnson: 'Their superpower seems to be deposing leaders.'

Rachel said: "Unless Boris Johnson decided to come back purely to rattle Rishi, I don’t know why you would put yourself through that, and as Rishi said  himself when he dodged conference, it may be time to let Liz truss own Birmingham [where the Tory party conference took place].

"I genuinely don’t know Tom," Rachel added. "When that chap saw Boris Johnson’s face in a chicken korma..."

Read more: Face of Boris Johnson spotted in chicken Korma by carer who sees it as 'premonition' of things to come

"The stars aligned," Tom joked.

Mr Johnson is currently languishing at fifth in the race to become the next Prime Minister after Liz Truss resigned on Thursday, according to bookmakers.

Rachel Johnson calls for sympathy towards Truss

The latest odds for the next Conservative leader this afternoon were: Rishi Sunak: 6/4; Penny Mordaunt: 4/1; Jeremy Hunt: 8/1; Ben Wallace: 10/1; and Boris Johnson at 13/1.

Other predicted runners and riders for the leadership include: Kemi Badenoch: 23/1 Michael Gove: 33/1 Theresa May: 33/1 and Suella Braverman: 40/1.

Rachel said she thought Mr Johnson "would have to be guaranteed a place in the final two" if he were going to run.

"I can’t bring you any decisive information," she added. "I wouldn’t bet the farm on it, is what I would say."

UK Prime Minister Liz Truss resigns
Prime Minister Liz Truss resigns. Picture: Getty

She added: "I think that he is on a flight back from the Caribbean and everything will become clear."

Mr Johnson does still have his supporters among Tory MPs. Government minister Sir James Duddridge said it was time for a comeback by Boris Johnson.

Tweeting with the hashtag #bringbackboris, he said: "I hope you enjoyed your holiday boss. Time to come back. Few issues at the office that need addressing."

Read more: Liz Truss quits after 45 days making her the shortest serving PM in history

Read more: Penny Mordaunt, Rishi Sunak or Boris Johnson: Who could replace Liz Truss?

Read more: Face of Boris Johnson spotted in chicken Korma

Sir James had served as a parliamentary private secretary to Mr Johnson when he was in No 10. According to a poll out this week, the majority of Tory members want Boris to replace Ms Truss.

Liberal Democrat leader Sir Ed Davey said: "Liz Truss trashed our economy and before her Boris Johnson failed our country."The Conservatives have shown time and time again that they are not fit to govern our great country.

"We don't need another Conservative prime minister lurching from crisis to crisis, letting the British people down, increasing their mortgages, not tackling the economic problems.

"The only way we are going to sort this out is if the Conservative MPs for once do their patriotic duty and work with the opposition to get the general election our country needs to let the British people have their say."

Boris Johnson could stand to be the next Conservative leader
Boris Johnson could stand to be the next Conservative leader. Picture: Getty

It comes after Ms Truss resigned after just 45 days in office, she said: "Our country has been held back for too long by low economic growth.

"We set out a vision for a low tax, high growth economy that would take advantage of the freedoms of Brexit.

"I have spoken to His Majesty the King to notify him I am resigning as leader of the Conservative Party."

Her government was engulfed with political turmoil, losing first Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng off the back of the mini-budget that crashed the pound and sent household costs soaring.