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July 19 'Freedom Day': Boris Johnson's biggest gamble is trusting the public

By Matthew Flinders, Founding Director of the Sir Bernard Crick Centre for the Public Understanding of Politics, University of Sheffield
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There is a reason that Tom Bower’s biography of Boris Johnson is subtitled “The Gambler”. The book details the life of a Teflon-coated politician who seemingly defies the usual rules of political life when it comes to scrapes and scandals, brinkmanship and buffoonery.

And yet Johnson’s decision to end virtually all COVID restrictions in England on July 19 and “live with the virus” is by far the biggest gamble of his life. As he put it:

We must be honest with ourselves that if we can’t reopen…

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