Just when it can’t get any more surreal, we hear that Tees Valley Mayor, Ben Houchen and Simon Clarke, MP for Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland and Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, have decided to throw in their support and back Boris Johnson to be the next Prime Minister.
People on Teesside love Boris?
The Northern Echo reported today that the pair said:
“People on Teesside love Boris”.
They also said:
“We back Boris because when the chips are down, he gets the big decisions right”.
They claim that Boris is the best person to lead the country.
Ben Houchen tweeted today:
So when exactly did the ‘levelling-up’ start on Teesside? The Conservatives have been in power for 12 years, Ben Houchen has been Tees Valley Mayor for five years, and Boris Johnson was Prime Minister for three years. Meanwhile recent figures show that one in three children in Middlesbrough are living in poverty. Hardly evidence of levelling-up, Simon Clarke.
And what of the numerous scandals around Boris Johnson? Houchen says:
“Boris has his flaws, everyone knows that and knows what they are. That is endearing to some people and it turns other people off.
“I, though, am entirely parochial about the issue, and I look at what he has done for Teesside, Darlington and Hartlepool.”
You just cannot make up this stuff…
And the rest of the North East?
According to the BBC, Richard Holden, MP for North West Durham, is supporting Rishi Sunak as is Guy Opperman, MP for Hexham.
Jill Mortimer, MP for Hartlepool, and Ian Levy, MP for Blyth are backing Boris Johnson. So is Anne-Marie Trevelyan, MP for Berwick.
We will add more, as soon as we know…