Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 24 July 2014

Jokey Boris Johnson hobnobs with Tory faithful

Mayor of London Boris Johnson pledged his support to PM David Cameron

Boris Johnson has delivered a provocative challenge to David Cameron and George Osborne to cut income tax for Britain’s highest earners.

The London Mayor’s call came after he burnished his Tory leadership credentials yesterday with an assured and joke-studded speech received rapturously by the faithful.

Although he was careful to pour praise on Mr Cameron, he cemented his position as the Prime Minister’s leading rival with a passionate plea for Britain to head into a new “age of enterprise” and a list of his achievements in the capital.

Later he reached out to the party right by repeating his demand for the top rate of tax to be lowered.

The tousle-haired party idol trod the high wire between disloyalty and self-promotional cheek with dizzying aplomb from the moment he shambled on to the stage. Boris shares with Bill Clinton an ability to fold statistics (the Jubilee line running “3mph faster than when I was elected” ) into a rhetorical whole, the implicit argument of which was that if his party can emulate his success |in London, nothing can stop |it.

And he pointed to the diversity of products made in London as evidence that entrepreneurial spirit was alive and well in Britain.

“Every single chocolate Hobnob in the world is made in London,” he declared.

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