Boris Johnson’s newspapers struggle to draw a line under Partygate woes

Boris Johnson’s newspapers struggle to draw a line under Partygate woes

A haunted-looking Boris Johnson stares in the front pages of many newspapers after a dramatic night of Conservative party bloodletting at Westminster.

The prime minister is seen being driven back to Downing Street after he won a Tory no-confidence vote in his leadership by 211 to 148.

Although he declared victory decisive and vowed to bash on in government, the reaction of some Tory-supporting newspapers suggests that he won't be able to draw a line under his Partygate woes any time soon.

A wounded victor, says the Times, along with the picture of Johnson, seems eerily similar to the famous picture of Margaret Thatcher being driven away from Downing Street after she was ousted in a Tory party coup.

The paper adds that Johnson's election was worse than expected, and throws up another parallel with Thatcher by noting that the same proportion of MPs voted against her as against her current scandal-plagued successor. She resigned two days later.

The Daily Telegraph's front page headline says Hollow victory tears Tories apart and carries a secondary headline saying Johnson's authority has been crushed as rebels circle to finish him off.

The paper's columnists line up to give a damning verdict on Johnson's prospects for leading the party into the future with Tim Stanley saying simply: The PM is toast. The Financial Times also suggests that the prime minister is badly damaged by the vote, with its headline saying Johnson wounded in confidence vote as 41% of Tory MPs rebel The Mirror proclaims Party s over, Boris and warns that he will be out in a year The Guardian spokesman says PM is clinging to power after the humiliation of columnist Martin Kettle. Politicians don't recover from such things. The i front page says Wounded Johnson is in danger and inside its political editor, Paul Waugh, says Johnson is the sick man of Downing Street, infecting all around him. The Metro thinks it s time for Johnson to go: The prime minister still has some defiant backing from his cheerleaders in the national papers.