FAR from bringing Boris Johnson’s leadership crisis to a head, Sue Gray’s report into bad behaviour at No 10 is just the overture.
It will not draw a line under the Partygate saga because the Prime Minister’s Tory enemies have already moved on to the next scandal.
Shells are now falling on No 10 out of the blue and from all angles, cheered on by former adviser Dominic Cummings, who has vowed “regime change”.
One Cabinet Minister said yesterday: “For the first time I am worried. There are just too many people trying to kill him now.”
Last week it was Brexiteer William Wragg with allegations of mob-handed whips blackmailing MPs.
This week it’s “Islamophobia” from sacked-minister Nusrat Ghani — an ally of leadership rival Jeremy Hunt.
MPs were quick to spot both are key players in the 1922 Committee — the Tory power brokers increasingly agitating for a change of boss.
All PMs have to deal with blue-on-blue sniping from a combination of the “past it” and the “passed over”.
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But given there were three elections in just five years, the disgruntled pile is even larger than usual.
Boris has a uniquely large number of Tory party factions annoyed with him — all at the same time.
Bitter Remainers will always hate him, but their numbers are too few.
The PM is also dangerously exposed to Brexiteers, fed up with the slow rate of deregulation away from the EU — and lockdowns.
The Cabinet ally said: “There’s no way he can please both these groups at the same time. To suck up to one side he’s got to alienate the other.”
Add to that the Red Wallers worried about their marginal seats and shire Tories angry over big spending to prop up the 2019 northern gains.
But as one minister warns, a bloody civil war is a direct route to losing power, saying: “They are just not scared enough of how rubbish opposition is — because most of them have never felt it.”