At the end of last week, the Prime Minister invited Tory MPs to a massive conference call, a kind of digital fireside chat to lift their spirits. It was a disaster. First the MPs were astonished to learn that he wasn’t taking questions; then his connection failed halfway through — at which point the callers, who had been ‘muted’, became ‘unmuted’ and started talking loudly and all at once. One of them, Michael Fabricant, started singing ‘Rule Britannia’. When the call came to an end, the MPs were all left wondering the same thing. What’s happened to Boris? Where is the man we thought we voted for?
Physically, Boris Johnson is still around. This week he could be found sulking on the front bench, being given lectures on competence from Ed Miliband.