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‘We need more Trump! Trump, Trump, Trump!’, said Boris


The Spectator celebrated its 190th birthday tonight with a lavish summer party. I arrived to find a man and a woman standing at the entrance dressed in 19th-century garb and loudly demanding I ‘woof like a dog’.

‘Perhaps later,’ I deflected.

The party was a seething, sizzling mass of sweaty (it was a hot night) politicians and media luminaries agog with fevered gossip about Theresa May’s Brexit summit at Chequers and Donald Trump’s visit to the UK.

I spied Boris Johnson lurking beneath the steps to the upper garden. A couple of starry-eyed acolytes were milling around him, but in previous years at this same party I’ve seen Boris mobbed like a rock star. His current star isn’t so much waning as fracturing in two; since the referendum, people either still love him or absolutely loathe him.

In previous years I’ve seen Boris mobbed like a rock star. His current star isn’t so much waning as fracturing in two

‘Good evening, Foreign Secretary!’ I exclaimed.

‘AH MORGAN, GOOD EVENING!’ he barked (Boris speaks VERY loudly at all times), his narrow eyes instantly screwing into suspicious beady mode. 

‘I wanted you to be amongst… friend,’ I said, emphasising the singular. ‘You looked a bit lonely.’

‘FRIEND?’ he bellowed indignantly. ‘I am surrounded by many, many FRIENDS, MORGAN!’

‘That’s what Julius Caesar thought,’ I replied. ‘You looking forward to Trump’s visit?’

Boris’s eyes lit up. ‘I am! We need more Trump! He’s right about lots of things. Look at trade tariffs – he says we should get rid of them and everyone goes bonkers. But he’s right – why do we need them? Zero tariffs is the way forward. Zero, zero, ZERO! Trump, Trump, TRUMP!’

‘Perhaps we should put him in charge of Brexit…’ I said, knowing Boris got into trouble for suggesting that idea at a private function.

‘Ye… ye…. Now wait a minute, Morgan, this is a trap, isn’t it? You’re luring me into indiscretion. I can’t stay here talking to you or I’ll land myself in all manner of hell.’

And with that, Boris bounded off.

I met Brexit Secretary David Davis after he finished a brief chat with Theresa May. (Amusingly, standing near them was Cass Pennant, former leader of West Ham’s infamous hooligan gang, the Inter City Firm. I’m sure he’d have some good advice for the PM on how to quell unruly Cabinet troublemakers.)

‘Excited about the Chequers showdown?’ I asked.

‘I’m excited about spending some quality time with my colleagues, yes Piers!’ he chuckled.

‘How long before the first walkout?’

‘The problem with Chequers is you can’t just walk out – it’s miles from anywhere.’

‘So you’re trapped in there.’


‘Do you actually enjoy being our Brexit supremo?’

‘That’s an interesting question. It’s bloody hard work. Every day, all day, I’m thinking of little else. Usually at this time of year I’m planning my summer holiday, but that won’t be happening. So it’s tough. But this is a very important thing in the history of this country and we have to get it right. That challenge is something I feel very strongly.’

Then Davis leaned in conspiratorially and whispered: ‘I told Theresa… I’m off.’

‘Sorry, WHAT?’ I exclaimed, sensing a bombshell revelation. ‘You’ve quit?’

Davis roared with laughter.

‘No! I told Theresa I want ten weeks off when this is all over!’

‘So you won’t quit then?’


‘How’s Brexit all going to wash up?

‘Look, there’s a long way to go yet in these negotiations. Like any deal, a lot of stuff will get settled at the end, some of it perhaps ten seconds before the end.’

‘And if we get no deal?’

‘Then we get no deal. The world won’t suddenly disintegrate.’

Rod Liddle, my favourite Spectator columnist, stormed over to harangue Davis about the Brexit chaos.

‘Where’s our DIGNITY?!’ he ranted.

Davis peered down at wild-haired, sweat-soaked, wine-guzzling, rage-spewing Liddle.

‘Sorry, Rod,’ he grinned, ‘but are you seriously lecturing me about dignity?’

Even Liddle burst out laughing.

Former chancellor George Osborne came over to say hello.

‘Current thoughts on Brexit?’ I asked.

‘It’s a complete disaster,’ he replied.

On the way out, I bumped into Mick Hucknall. The Simply Red star has just quit Twitter, frustrated by how insanely incendiary political rhetoric has become.

‘Nobody seems capable of having reasonable debate any more,’ he sighed. ‘I’ll go back on it, but I just need a break from all the screaming. I’m not even interested in what I think any more. I’ve grown sick of my own opinions!’

He’s so right. Twitter’s become an explosive echo chamber where everyone assumes their opinion, especially on Brexit or Trump, is the only acceptable one and those who don’t share it must be shrieked self-righteously into silence.

It reminds me of this exchange between Blackadder and Lord Percy: ‘It is said, Percy,’ said Blackadder, ‘that the civilised man seeks out good and intelligent company so that by learned discourse he may rise above the savage and closer to God.’

‘Yes!’ replied Lord Percy, delightedly, ‘I’d heard that!’

‘Personally however,’ says Blackadder, ‘I like to start the day with a total d*ckhead to remind me I’m best.’

As I left, I was confronted again by the 19th- century duo.

‘Woof!’ beseeched the man. So I woofed.

I still don’t know why I had to do this. Which is exactly how I feel about Brexit.


David Davis and Boris Johnson have both resigned. So Davis will get to have his holiday after all, and Johnson will get to spend more time with the only thing he loves more than political power – himself.