Jeremy Hunt refuses to say that Boris Johnson is an honest man

Jeremy Hunt has refused to say that Boris Johnson is an “honest” man.

The former cabinet minister said that “talking about personalities is not a useful thing.”

Hunt, whom Johnson defeated in the 2019 Conservative leadership contest, also declined to give a definitive answer when asked if the prime minister was the right person to lead the party to the next general election.

And while he insisted that now was not the right time for another leadership race, he once again refused to rule out the possibility of running once.

Appearing on BBC One’s Sunday Morning programme, Hunt was asked: “Is Boris Johnson an honest man?”

He replied, “I think talking about personalities is not a helpful thing.

“It is a simple question, but it is not helpful when I have just said that we must recognize that the international situation is very serious and that we need strong leadership from the prime minister that we have.”

Asked if the prime minister is the right person to lead the Conservatives into the next election, Hunt said only: “I hope so.

“I also hope that we recognize that in order to do that, we have quite a mountain to climb in terms of winning back the support of many of our core voters.

“I hope he can turn things around, because as I say, I don’t think this is the time for a leadership competition.”

On his own political ambitions, Hunt said: “I don’t rule out a return to my politics myself, but I don’t think now is the right time.

“Britain has been the strongest member of the Western alliance in the face of the first major war in Europe in our lifetimes and I think the only person who would rejoice if we had a several-month break in Britain’s leadership would be (Russian President ) Vladimir Putin”.

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