In the run up to the 2019 Tory leadership election a televised head to head debate was held on Thursday 13th June 2019 – the favourite Boris Johnson declined to participate.
This was not that surprising given that Theresa May had declined to participate in some of the the 2017 general election debates. Instead that evening she sent out her Home Secretary Amber Rudd.
And equally in the 2019 General Election, Boris Johnson occasionally sent out Rishi Sunak and Michael Gove to represent him.
But when Boris shunned that first June 2019 Channel 4 televised Tory leadership debate he knew full well that more candidates would be eliminated that weekend.
Theresa May had stepped down as leader of the Conservative Party on the 2nd May and Johnson didn’t announce his candidature till the 16th of that month.
Nominations for candidates opened at 10am on Friday 10th June 2019 and shut at 5pm the same day.
In 2019 the 1922 committee had a two day meeting in which all candidates set out their pitches on the 11th and 12th, and on the 13th the first ballot took place and three candidates were eliminated. One – Sam Gyimah – had dropped out even before the first ballot and another – Matt Hancock – dropped out straight after.
So it is not unprecedented for the TV debate to take place after the first round. In 2019 the first ballot was on Monday 13th June, and the first TV debate on Thursday 16th on Channel Four.
According to that logic, there should only be one ballot before the 2022 live TV debate.
But the 1922 committee are changing the rules and making it easier for more candidates to be knocked out by increasing the number of votes you need to stay in the running.
So it could well be that after the first ballot we go from ten or eleven candidates to just three or four.
In 2019 Johnson, Raab, Gove, Stewart, Javid and Hunt were all still in the race when the channel four debate took place.
Will we see Braverman of the ERG face off against Patel and Truss to represent the more right wing end of the party?
Shapps himself is a full right winger as is Hunt. Everyone is falling over themself to back the unworkable Rwanda and Northern Ireland policies.
This is the time for journalists to quiz the candidates on their solutions, but it would appear that scrutiny is in short supply.
We’re all duty bound to gatecrash this limited hangout.
The rules for the timing of the TV debates are something I’ve looked into before and can be changed due to public pressure. The BBC has always shown bias toward the Tories. Don’t expect that to change.
Apparently Grant Shapps, who was partially responsible for the death of a Tory activist, is having his Wikipedia entry cleaned as we speak.
Shapps performance on Sky TV was good this weekend, though it contained a multitude of lies, particularly about the Elliott Johnson suicide and the subsequent Conservative cover up. I wonder what Elliott Johnson’s family are thinking now.
Young Britons Foundation
This video I produced in 2018 refers to the death of Elliott Johnson. Peter Jukes knows more about this subject than most. In this video he gives an update of what happened to the people who were in the Young Britons Foundation which had been founded in 2003. I fully recommend watching it today.