Is Boris Johnson The Worst Prime Minister in British History?

Assessing him and his competitors

Tom Stevenson
9 min readSep 26, 2019


After the landmark ruling by the Supreme Court, that the prorogation of parliament by Boris Johnson’s government was unlawful, it leaves his leadership and plan to deliver Brexit by 31 October in tatters.

Since being elected as leader of the Conservative Party on 24 July, he has suffered setback after setback. From losing six votes in six days, he also had two attempts to engineer an early election shut down by opposition MPs.

He saw an early defection from his party when MP Philip Lee crossed the floor to join the Liberal Democrats. This removed the majority the Conservatives had enjoyed until that point.

He then exacerbated this situation when he removed the whip from 21 Conservative MPs who voted against the government in an attempt to stop a no-deal Brexit.

For a man that has desired to be Prime Minister for a long, long time, it is turning out to be a poisoned chalice. Unlike Midas, everything Johnson touches turns to dust.

This latest ruling effectively states that the Prime Minister broke the law when he advised the Queen to shut down parliament. This is uncharted territory for British politics. In the space of two months, Johnson is staking his claim to not just be the worst Prime Minister in modern history, but the worst since the role was created in 1721!

To determine just how bad Johnson is, I have delved into the murky past of British politics to assess his competitors for the title.

Theresa May

We don’t have very far to go back to begin the case study. Theresa May’s reign is up there with some of the worst and there is a compelling argument that hers was the worst of them all.

She squandered a Conservative majority in the House of Commons when she called an early election in 2017 to get a bigger mandate for her version of Brexit. This resulted in a hung parliament, which meant she had to do a deal with the Northern Irish Democratic Unionist Party to form a working majority.

Once she secured a deal with the European Union in late 2018, she was unable to get it through parliament after not one…



Tom Stevenson