‘Who IS this Boris guy?’ asked an American friend yesterday.
To which there is no simple answer.
Boris Johnson, the man who is currently hot favorite to be Britain’s new Prime Minister in four weeks, is a complex, mysterious, Machiavellian character.
For a start, he doesn’t even call himself Boris.
His name is actually Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson, and his close family and friends all call him ‘Al’.
Boris Johnson (pictured on June 22), who is favorite to become Prime Minister, is a mysterious, Machiavellian character
Like Donald Trump (pictured together in 2017), he was born in New York, so could technically qualify to become President of the United States
Nor was Boris, now 55, born in Britain.
In fact, like Donald Trump, he was born in New York, so could technically qualify to become President of the United States.
(God help America!)
But for now, his beady ambitious eyes are set firmly on the top job in Britain, something that I and many of my fellow Brits view with a mixture of bemusement, hilarity, horror and deep mounting concern at what he may do to the country.
I’ve known Boris for 25 years and always got on well with him.
But to call him a divisive, polarizing character is like saying President Trump’s angelic halo is a little chipped.
The Boris positives are that he’s charming, intelligent, passionate, emotional, eloquent and loquacious, with a great sense of humor and undeniable star quality.
If he walks into a party – and boy, does he love to party - Boris turns heads, even if that’s just people shaking theirs in dismay.
Women are attracted to the blond-haired, barrel-shaped bulldog like bees to the proverbial honeypot, and men want to bromance him.
The Boris negatives are too numerous to fully detail here.
But his critics, as with Trump’s, would argue he’s a lying, shameless, hypocritical, racist, homophobic, sexist, unreliable and cheating buffoon.
He’s also a hard drinking former drug-abuser, and on-going sex maniac.
That last affliction is an Achilles heel that once again threatens to derail his political ambition.
Like Donald Trump (pictured June 23), he was born in New York, so could technically qualify to become President of the United States
Indeed, so gargantuan is his enthusiasm for womanizing that I used to include this joke about Boris in speeches: ‘In a new poll, 10,000 women were asked if they wanted to have sex with Boris Johnson, and 8567 said “never again, no.”’
(Boris used to return the favor by doing this joke about me in his speeches when I worked full time in the U.S: ‘Britain is a great exporter – bikes to Holland, cakes to Germany, tea to Boston, and we even managed to export Piers Morgan to America too. The only fear with that last one is that he might be deported back.’)
In 2004, Boris was fired from the Conservative front bench for lying to party leader Michael Howard about his affair with magazine columnist Petronella Wyatt – who had an abortion after he impregnated her, and later revealed he liked to wear a piratical bandana with skull and crossbones.
Now his sex life is back making lurid headlines again after police were called last week to the South London flat he shares with his latest girlfriend Carrie Symonds, 31, following reports of a screaming argument including plate-smashing, loud profanity and a cry from her of ‘GET OFF ME!’
The incident, which police are not pursuing as a criminal matter, could not have come at a worse time for the man who now wants us to think of him as a cool, calm statesman.
Instead of focusing on his plans to finally resolve the three-year fiasco of Brexit, Britain’s exit from the European Union, all the talk and media coverage has been on his private life again.
And the further you dig into his life, the murkier it gets.
His sex life is making lurid headlines after police were called last week to the South London flat he shares with his latest girlfriend Carrie Symonds, 31, (pictured together) following reports of a screaming argument
Twice-married Boris’s rampant affairs with myriad women have led to a unique situation where he is the first would-be Prime Minister in modern British history whom nobody is quite sure how many children he has sired.
Officially, he has four kids by his estranged second wife Marina, all with exotic names like Lara Lettice, Theodore Apollo and Cassia Peaches.
Unofficially, he has at least one lovechild from an affair