Our pre-Commons stage take was that Johnson is best placed to do so on time. As ballot papers are returned, we stick by that judgement.
The front-runner has so far played it safe when it comes to the media, but the BBC’s premier political interviewer could yet make mincemeat of him.
Each week, we are summarising the announcements made by those vying to succeed May as Prime Minister.
It offers no evidence of a Hunt surge, and by this time next week a significant percentage of Party members will have voted.
Plus: Johnson, not a populist. Hunt’s beside manner. Lewis and his highly professional CCHQ team. And: the courage of 16 year old Ajay.
Also: Next Prime Minister faces tricky questions on devolution, same-sex marriage, and abortion in Ulster; and May orders a review of devolution – will it do any good?
There are all these ghastly photos of them hugging passers by and avoiding difficult questions.
He is an admirably English candidate, a sensitive and prudent man who can be relied on to behave like an officer and a gentleman.
Each contender was able to write directly to the almost 7,500 locally elected Conservatives – a sizeable and influential part of the electorate.
Johnson had been touted as a potential leader long before I was handing out leaflets for him a decade ago; but friends, those were different days and different times.
His campaign was slow to start, and sometimes misfired. But he found his voice, is part of a Johnson future – and is back on the up.
If Brexit really must happen, then better to be frank about the impossibility of renegotiating the deal, or exiting without one.
“A Prime Minister willing to walk away. But a Prime Minister who will give negotiations a chance, and put in place a proper strategy to ensure they succeed.”
“I believe we’ll leave sooner with me than with Boris or anyone else because I’m the person most likely to negotiate a deal.”
The public have little time for phony arguments about whether the public or private sectors should deliver NHS services.