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Pankaj Mishra

Voters Must End Boris Johnson’s Antics

British institutions and a debased political culture have allowed the Tory leader to get away with too much, for far too long. 

Trumpian immunity. 

Trumpian immunity. 

Photographer: Leon Neal/Getty Images

In 2016, while en route to the White House, Donald Trump declared, “I could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn’t lose voters.” It’s now clear that Trump’s close understudy, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, can claim the same miraculous immunity.

After a journalistic career boosted by numerous infractions, including fake news about the European Union and made-up quotes, he managed to become prime minister with some whopping falsehoods about the advantages of Brexit. Two years of Johnson’s occupancy of 10 Downing Street have been chiefly distinguished by the frequency and scale of his blundering and chicanery.