Boris Johnson is all talk and no action, says ANN WIDDECOMBE

Vacillating, pusillanimous, all talk and no do, he is edging inexorably towards a massive sell-out while keeping up the rhetoric of resolution. Crawl over broken glass? Certainly, Frau Merkel, how deep would you like the pile of glass to be? Can the UK strew it for you?

I used to hope that was a second Quintus Fabius Maximus but it appears he is merely the Grand Old Duke of York.

Maximus, of course, was the Roman general who became known as the “delayer” because he refused to engage Hannibal’s troops in a full-scale battle, instead interrupting their supply lines and fighting only minor skirmishes in a prolonged war of attrition.

But the only attrition in the EU saga has been to the PM’s nerve. His delays from June to July to mid-October, to the end of October to mid-December and now to New Year’s Eve itself have eroded nothing but the UK’s self-confidence.

How many times has he led us up the hill of independence merely to march us abjectly down again? But why, why, why? He has the mandate and he has the majority. Yet he combines the decisiveness of Churchill’s oratory with the indecisiveness of Theresa May’s pathetic wobbling.

We left the EU to become our own masters, not semi-detached members of that overgrown dictatorship. We left to take charge of our own laws, borders and trade.

If the PM had walked away at the end of June we would have had a trade deal by now because the EU would have realised we were serious about our sovereignty but as it is we merely talk about it.

Boris still prates about no deal being the likely final outcome but if he really believed that he would have drawn stumps last week, simply in order to give British business certainty.

Judge a man not by what he says but by what he does.

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