"I haven't got the ambition, and I haven't got the self-confidence, and I haven't got that real aching desire to lead. Which really is an essential quality in a leader. So I don't think I'll ever be leader of the party. But I'm not willing to rule myself out for all eventualities in the future."
Like his similar "I am not saying there are no circumstances" line on Marr a few months ago, this latest quote is distinguished by its timing. Then, Labour's disastrous peformance in the local and European elections was only a few weeks away. Now, the party conference is kicking off amidst rumblings of an October coup. You'd almost think Johnson is sending his colleagues a coded plea: "I'll step into the breach, chaps, should anything unfortunate happen to Gordon..."