Britain: Boris Johnson Resigns as Prime Minister

Prepare the Struggle for a Workers Government!

By Laurence Humphries, 11 July 2022,


On the 8th July 2022 Boris Johnson announced his resignation as Prime Minister outside of No. 10 Downing Street. Between 6th and 8th July over 50 Cabinet and other Ministers had resigned including his Chancellor Rishi Sunak and Sajd Javid his Health Minister. Johnson dismissed Michael Gove for criticising his Premiership and calling for him to resign. After Tory Grandees had put pressure on Johnson, he had no alternative but to resign. As always Johnson blamed everyone around him.

“Boris Johnson has resigned as Conservative leader and blamed the “herd instinct” of Tory MPs for pushing him out of office, after a series of cabinet ministers told him he had lost the support of the party. In a statement outside Downing Street, Johnson acknowledged that “no one is remotely indispensable” and accepted that it was the “will of the parliamentary Conservative party” that he should leave No 10. But he also signalled his intention to stay on as prime minister while the party picks his successor, potentially until autumn, triggering an immediate backlash among Tory MPs. The statement brings an end to an extraordinary standoff between Johnson and cabinet ministers, including his new chancellor, Nadhim Zahawi, who were urging him to quit amid anger over Chris Pincher affair and other scandals.” [1]


Reasons for Boris Johnson’s Resignation


Many bourgeois journalists have given reasons why Boris Johnson had to ultimately resign citing various scandals and wrong decisions while he was in Office. After winning the 2019 General election on the slogan ‘Let’s get Brexit Done’ by a huge majority winning parliamentary seats in former Labour and working-class areas, Johnson has been driven from office over a number of scandals during his term of office.

To name just a few. The Chris Pincher Affair. Chris Pincher was appointed to be a Deputy Chief Whip by Johnson in 2019 although later exposed as having assaulted men at a Gentleman’s Club. Johnson retorted he knew nothing about the matter or conveniently forgot. Many Tory MP’s have been found to have committed sexual crimes against women. The culture in the Tory Party is for all to see how corrupt and degenerate the Tory party has become.

Or another example: Partygate. Johnson encouraged the breaking of Lockdown rules by holding parties in Downing Street when the rest of the population was restricted and heavily fined for breaking any of the Lockdown rules. He is only fined by the Metropolitan police whereas many other people found themselves facing more serious crimes. A clear example of class justice!

“On Wednesday 29 June, the MP Chris Pincher - at the time, the Conservative deputy chief whip - went to a private members' club in London. In his words, he "drank far too much" and "embarrassed himself. He was accused of groping two men, which led to a flurry of allegations, some dating back years. It set off a chain of events that ended with the prime minister's downfall.  In April this year, the prime minister was fined for breaking lockdown rules, after attending a gathering on his birthday in June 2020. He also apologised for going to a "bring your own booze" party in the Downing Street garden during the first lockdown. More widely, the Metropolitan Police issued 126 fines to 83 people for breaking lockdown rules in Downing Street and Whitehall. And a report by Sue Gray - a senior civil servant - described a series of social events by political staff that broke lockdown rules. "The senior leadership at the centre, both political and official, must bear responsibility for this culture," she wrote.” [2]

Other scandals or wrong decisions were Johnson’s attempt to bypass parliament and rule by decree. This was overruled by the Supreme Court and parliament having being suspended was reinstated. His decision to remove the Protocol Agreement and create conflicts with the European Union. His utter contempt for bourgeois democracy during the COVID 19 Counterrevolution with Lockdowns and attacks on basic democracy.


Global crisis of capitalism


Many bourgeois commentators have attributed Boris Johnson’s down fall because of some bad flaws in his character like arrogance and a bullish attitude to all his critics. This might be true, but the main cause of his downfall is the global crisis of capitalism, with the depression of the world economy starting in autumn 2019, the acceleration of the inter-imperialist rivalry between all the Great Powers including Western Imperialists (USA, Europe and Japan) and the Eastern Imperialists of Russia and China. Russia’s imperialist war against the Ukraine is another expression of this fundamental changes in the world situation.

It is such process which has provoked a fundamental destabilization of the political and social conditions and which provokes a number of domestic political crisis in various countries all over the world. The recent popular uprisings in Sri Lanka, Ecuador, mass protests in Sudan, etc. are examples for this process.

The Bank of England recently released a depressing forecast of Britain’s economy during the next period forecasting serious recession and downturns in the Market. This is also true with statements from the Federal Reserve in the United States.

“The Bank of England has raised its inflation forecast again, and now predicts it will hit 11% this autumn, when energy bills rise. It had previously estimated that consumer price inflation would hit 10% – far over its 2% target. This new forecast shows that households face even more pain, with real wages already lagging inflation. Announcing today’s interest rate rise to 1.25%, the Bank says: CPI inflation is expected to be over 9% during the next few months and to rise to slightly above 11% in October. The increase in October reflects higher projected household energy prices following a prospective additional large increase in the of gem price cap. The Bank explains the surge in inflation is partly due to rising global energy – greatly exacerbated by the war in Ukraine – and other tradable goods prices.” [3]

The recent rail strike which paralysed the rail network for 3 days and the by-election defeats shows that the working class and the oppressed are fighting back. ASLEF, the train drivers’ union, will be on strike on 23rd July against Greater Anglia Railways. The two election defeats led to two Tory seats being overturned.


Crisis of reformism and centrism


The Labour Party now led by the pro-capitalist Keir Starmer has shown itself a faithful servant of capitalism. Labour is already discussing the possibilities of alliances with the Liberal Democrats in some sort of coalition government. The last vestiges of a bourgeois workers party is slowly disappearing under Starmer’s leadership. He has virtually eliminated the last vestiges of Corbynism and driven the left into abject defeat. The so-called Left Labour MP’s capitulate at every turn. Starmer has threatened expulsion to any MP who does not support NATO the imperialist alliance. He has threatened Corbyn with expulsion if he does not resign from his positions and his support for the Stop The War Movement.

The trade union bureaucracy, the other half of reformism, has no answers to the crisis although the masses are ready to fight and sometimes force the bureaucrats to support their actions. As Trotsky wrote in the Transitional Programme “The world political situation as a whole is chiefly characterized by a historical crisis of the leadership of the proletariat. (…) The historical crisis of mankind is reduced to the crisis of the revolutionary leadership.” [4]

The centrists meanwhile remain impotent caught between reformist and quasi-revolutionary slogans. Groups like the SWP, the Socialist Party and Socialist Alternative have no other slogans other than to call for future rail strikes. No perspective is offered and most of these pseudo-Trotskyists reject Trotsky’s Transitional Programme. Many of them are drifting rightwards with views indistinguishable from many left reformists.

Comrades of the RCIT in Britain put forward the following transitional demands to unite the working class and the masses in the struggle to overthrow capitalism and to establish socialism through the conquest of state power.

* For a sliding scale of wage increases for workers, the poor and oppressed in line with the rate of inflation.

* Cancel all energy increases. Immediate increases for the unemployed. Increase all benefits in line with inflation.

* Nationalise all capitalist corporations under workers control with no compensation. For a public works program under control of the labour movement.

* Build councils of action to organise protests and strike action. Prepare for an indefinite general strike in order that the working class may take political power. Force the TUC leadership to organise such a strike.

* Create armed self-defence guards to protect communities from police and fascist provocation.

* For a Workers Government based on councils of action and armed self-defence guards.

* Join the RCIT!



1) Boris Johnson resigns as Conservative leader after cabinet revolt | Boris Johnson | The Guardian

2) Boris Johnson resigns: Five things that led to the PM's downfall - BBC News

3) Bank of England says inflation will hit 11% after raising interest rates to 13-year high – as it happened | Business | The Guardian

4) Leon Trotsky: The Death Agony of Capitalism and the Tasks of the Fourth International: The Transitional Programme, 1938. New Park Publications


Britain: Boris Johnson’s Resignation from Parliament shows that Tories are in Crisis

By Laurence Humphries, RCIT Britain, 28 June 2023,


On the 9th June 2023, Boris Johnson, the former Premier resigned as an MP. Johnson had been engulfed by the so-called ‘Partygate’ scandal which saw him and his colleagues during the COVID-19 lockdown breaking all the rules of lockdown. There was no social distancing, no face coverings and instead mixing of people not confined to their own property and accommodation. While other people were forced to remain prisoners in their own homes under the strict lockdown policy, Johnson and his cabinet colleagues broke their own injunctions and rules. An enquiry was set up and investigated which found Johnson guilty. The result of this was that it was proved Johnson had lied and misled Parliament on his activities during the lockdown.


Boris Johnson deliberately misled the British parliament in an unprecedented way over rule-breaking parties at his office during COVID-19 lockdowns, a committee said on Thursday in a damning verdict that further tarnished the former prime minister. Almost a year ago, Johnson was talking about remaining prime minister into the 2030s. But the privileges committee - the main disciplinary body for lawmakers - said on Thursday he should now be stripped of having automatic access to parliament. The committee also accused Johnson of being "complicit in a campaign of abuse and attempted intimidation" towards them.


In typically combative style Johnson, who in 2019 led the Conservatives to a landslide election victory, dismissed the report as "a lie" and "a charade", and accused committee members of waging a vendetta against him. The stand-off will do little to heal the deep divisions in the Conservatives and can only pile pressure on Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, whose push to try to boost Britain's flagging economy is being overshadowed by the ongoing Johnson drama.” [1]


Before the report was published Johnson denied that he had done anything wrong and issued a statement saying, ‘that he had been forced out over Partygate’.


Boris Johnson has stepped down as a Tory MP after claiming he was "forced out of Parliament" over Partygate. The ex-PM saw in advance a report by the Commons Privileges Committee investigating if he misled the Commons over Downing Street lockdown parties. In an explosive and lengthy statement, he called the committee a "kangaroo court" whose purpose "has been to find me guilty, regardless of the facts". The committee said it had "followed the procedures and the mandate".


The cross-party committee of MPs - the majority of which are Conservative - added it would conclude its inquiry on Monday and "publish its report promptly". Mr Johnson's resignation now triggers a by-election in his marginal constituency of Uxbridge and South Ruislip. Delivering his announcement late on Friday evening, Mr Johnson said the draft report he had seen was "riddled with inaccuracies and reeks of prejudice", adding it was clear the committee was "determined to use the proceedings against me to drive me out of Parliament".


"They have still not produced a shred of evidence that I knowingly or recklessly misled the Commons," he said, insisting "I did not lie". [2]


And furthermore, the bourgeois press reported: “Former British Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s departure from parliament over COVID lockdown-breaking parties has sparked fevered speculation about his and the current government’s future. Johnson announced that he was quitting as a member of parliament on Friday, claiming he had been forced out in a stitch-up by his political opponents.


The 58-year-old populist politician has been under investigation by a cross-party committee about whether he deliberately lied to parliament over parties when he was in office. In evidence earlier this year, he insisted he had not”. [3]


The Crisis of British Imperialism


In 2019, when Johnson won the British general election, he was riding on the crest of the wage. Johnson had crushed the Jeremy Corbyn led labour party in the elections which was in effect an election focused on Brexit. Johnson had a huge majority and used the famous words ‘let Brexit be done’. This maverick politician was then immediately faced with the crisis of the COVID-19 pandemic. He and his cabinet were unprepared to deal with the health crisis and unsurprisingly decided to implement lockdowns. Johnson, the corrupt politician that he is, believed he could ride the storm but was unable and soon fell. His successors have all been in turmoil of crisis after crisis. This is of course because of the backlash numerous bourgeois politicians faced after utilizing bonapartist measures during the pandemic, as the RCIT characterized it, the COVID-Counterrevolution. In addition, the intense inter-imperialist rivalry between western Imperialist nations, primarily the USA, Japan, and Europe (including Britain) against the Eastern imperialists Russia and China increased and accelerated the economic crisis. The RCIT has analysed this development in a number of documents showing that a serious slump and recession throughout the world economy emerged since 2019. This of course had serious repercussions in Britain with runaway inflation. Poverty, homelessness, and mass unemployment beckons for the masses also throughout imperialist nations with Britain being no exception. After all, the tendency of the rate of profit to fall as Karl Marx predicted it, is still very true for today.


Rishi Sunak’s Government is ready to fall


Rishi Sunak, the present Prime Minister was also the Chancellor of the Exchequer in Johnson’s government. A former banker, he is very much a lame duck Prime Minister who faces an interminable crisis of capitalism, a system racked with crisis over crisis with the limited understanding of his former profession. This extreme chauvinist government with all of its Bonapartist tendencies, is unable to stem the tide. Interest rates have shot up by 8.7%, one of the highest throughout Europe. Food shortages, inflation and rising prices have forced many workers and their families to turn to food banks and similar agencies. Britain, reputed to be one of the richest nations in Europe, is reeling from crisis to crisis. Brexit, which was the solution of the right-wing of the bourgeoisie has failed to deliver. In fact, the opposite of what was promised has happened. A strike in multiple sectors of the economy has brought the current government in deeper crisis while it attempts to plug the hole.


The Tory party has split, and Johnson and Sunak are trading insults over who should get a peerage.


But it is worth examining the substance of Boris Johnson's claim. It takes us into the weeds of the procedure for being nominated for a seat in the House of Lords, but it matters for his credibility.


"To honour these peerages it was not necessary to overrule HOLAC - but simply to ask them to renew their vetting, which was a mere formality," Mr Johnson said. HOLAC is the House of Lords Appointments Commission. But both the Cabinet Office and the former Conservative leader Michael Howard have said publicly this is nonsense. Lord Howard, who once sacked Boris Johnson for lying, said the former prime minister's claim was "simply not true". [4]


Bankruptcy of Reformism


The Labour party, currently led by the pro-capitalist Keir Starmer, has refused to fully support the strikes and social disturbances taking place in Britain. Starmer warned his MP’s that they face suspension or expulsion, if any of them attempt to appear on a picket line to support workers trying to improve their wages or conditions at work. It is an extraordinary period of massive industrial action in Britain. Many capitalists and sections of the bourgeoisie see a safe pair of hands in Starmer who will not rock the boat or attempt to bring in a watered-down system of what many bourgeois forces believe to be “socialism” but would be more of a new Keynesianism. Like the neo-liberal Blair before him, Starmer has cleared the decks, expelled, or proscribed centrist forces to ensure that he presents a united pro-capitalist party, ready to be in a government. History has taught us that bureaucratically led Labour in Government has always prop up the hated and degenerated capitalist system, not smashed it or even advocate for socialism.


Centrism and the Covid-Counterrevolution


The SWP, the biggest centrist party in Britain, has made some useful criticisms of Johnson’s departure. “He was implicated in fake statements about the serial carousing at Number 10 while ordinary people were not allowed to meet up, attend funerals or visit their dying relatives. He has not escaped the stench from Downing Street’s vomit-stained rooms, or his willingness to “let the bodies pile high” rather than interfere with profit-making. In much less than four years he has gone from a near-landslide election victory to being chased out as an MP. Johnson never departed from his belief that there was one set of laws for “little people” and another code entirely for the elite. Even his final honours list, also released on Friday, featured his Party gate fellows”. [5]


But the fact remains that during the COVID-19 counterrevolution, the SWP and most of the centrists and fake-Trotskyists supported the lockdown and de facto encouraged the state to continue to imprison people in their own homes. They lined up with trade union bureaucracy and reformist forces to support and even demand attacks on democratic rights under the pretext of the health crisis. What they did was in fact not to fight a pandemic but to support the emerging Bonapartism. The capitalist state used the lockdown to master and perfect more elaborate techniques of surveillance like face-recognition A.I.


The RCIT opposed the lockdowns as both inefficient as a healthcare method and even dangerous for the general public health. We characterised the period of attacks against democratic rights as the COVID-Counterrevolution in stark contrast to these centrists and fake-Trotskyists who completely ignored the true character of the bourgeois policy at that time. With their ignorance, the centrist, together with social-democracy and the trade union bureaucracy have propped up Johnson and his supporters. Black Lives Matter, Extinction Rebellion and a few others ignored the restrictions and continued to demonstrate against the state. As the RCIT stated correctly: “It is particularly shameful that large sectors of the British left – from the Labour Left, Stalinists like the “Morning Star” to various pseudo-Trotskyists – fully support the Lockdown policy. Several of these organizations even support the so-called “ZeroCOVID” campaign – a ridiculous initiative which criticizes the government for not imposing an even harder lockdown!


These forces call the government to impose ultra-draconic mass curfews for the people and to close all workplaces (accept “essential” businesses) “until the virus has been eliminated”. It is not accidental that the campaign praises the brutal Lockdown policy of the Stalinist-capitalist dictatorship in China as a model! These forces call the government to impose ultra-draconic mass curfews for the people and to close all workplaces (accept “essential” businesses) “until the virus has been eliminated”. It is not accidental that the campaign praises the brutal Lockdown policy of the Stalinist-capitalist dictatorship in China as a model!


Among the enthusiastic supporters of this reactionary campaign is the largest “Trotskyist” organization in Britain – the “Socialist Workers Party” which stands in the tradition of Tony Cliff. It is left to a tiny minority of Marxists – in Britain as well as in Europe – to oppose the capitalist Lockdown policy. The Revolutionary Communist International Tendency (RCIT) has been one of the very few socialist forces which denounced the reactionary and anti-democratic offensive of the ruling class from the very beginning in February/March 2020. We characterize this policy as the COVID-19 Counterrevolution as its purpose is to atomize and weaken the working class and oppressed." [6]


Time to bring down the Sunak Government


The exposure of Johnson as a charlatan has brought the Government of Rishi Sunak in a crisis. The Tories in power are weak, divided, and ready to fall. The RCIT in BRITAIN puts forward the following transitional demands to unite all socialist forces ready to bring down this hatred government:


* We call on the TUC to organize for mass strikes up to an indefinite general strike to overthrow the Sunak Government


* Build action committees to organise the struggle! We will need armed defence guards from the workers and oppressed in order to protect communities and workers from the police and fascist provocations!


* Nationalisation of multinational corporations under workers control, especially the energy giants including BP, Shell, and others! End the business secret and open the books! The workers shall see the mega profits that capitalists are making! Fight for high wages, way beyond the inflation rate!


* For international solidarity! No to the present immigration laws! Stop Islamophobia! Fight against the Chauvinism and Bonapartism of the government and its police! Stop all deportations immediately! All refugees should receive full democratic rights and complete access to all social services! All migrants and people of the south should receive the unconditional right to live their culture openly, to wear their own clothes, speak their own language and observe their own customs without restrictions!


* Fight for a Workers Government, based on socialist principles!


* For the right of Northern Ireland to become independent from British rule! For a socialist Federation in the region of Britain, based on the voluntary participation of Scotland, Wales and Ireland and without any privileges for England!


Join the RCIT and fight with us for the building of a new, revolutionary world party, the 5th Internationale!






[1] Boris Johnson deliberately misled parliament, UK report says | Reuters


[2] I've been forced out over Partygate report, says Boris Johnson | BBC


[3] UK politics reels from ex-PM Johnson’s shock exit | News | Al Jazeera


[4] Battle rages between Boris Johnson and Rishi Sunak for credibility and loyalty - BBC News


[5] Boris Johnson slithers off as an MP amid lies and threats - Socialist Worker


[6] Britain: Tens of Thousands Protest against the Lockdown Regime - RCIT - Revolutionary Communist International Tendency (