The Tory beauty contest has been sadly drab so far. Even the promises of what candidates would do for the nation in the few days, weeks or months they might have as the next Prime Minister have scarcely raised an eyebrow. This may be because we know that they will not be kept. Had it been otherwise we might have expected that Mr Johnson’s bold proposal to cut his own tax-bill – and naturally Mr Rees-Mogg’s too – might have provoked a spot of discontent. But it seems to have been met with general indifference, even from fellow hacks not fortunate enough to be paid a quarter of a million a year for a weekly thousand words of waffle written in a style that would have seemed somewhat laboured in Punch (*) seventy years ago.
Instead there has been more fuss about Mr Gove’s admission that in his giddy youth