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The best Prime Ministers make their own luck

11 November 2017

10:38 AM

11 November 2017

10:38 AM

Another week, another Cabinet resignation. Now, as I say in The Sun this morning, there are those saying that Theresa May is just being unlucky right now. As Downing Street aides point out, few would have predicted a few weeks ago that Westminster was going to be engulfed in a sex scandal or that Priti Patel was going to have to resign for running her own, independent foreign policy.

Theresa May’s problem, though, isn’t that a black cat walked in front of her. Rather, it is that her government is becalmed. It doesn’t have enough momentum to get through crises, so it gets stuck in them.


As a result, the calculation about whether May can stay as Prime Minister is staring to shift. One previously bullish Cabinet Minister told me yesterday, ‘She won’t last until Brexit day’. Most Tory MPs, though, are still reluctant to move against May: they fear the chaos that could follow.

But May needs to regain the initiative. That will require a big, bold Budget which is sufficient to the moment on housing. It also needs May to decide what kind of Brexit she wants. As I write in the magazine this week, only once she has made that decision can she start setting out her vision Britain to be after Brexit. Finally, it will require her to carry out a sweeping reshuffle which shows she still has the power to hire and fire and that she is determined to bring on the next generation of talent. If May does these things, her luck will change for the better.

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