THE Prime Minister’s comments on the devolution disaster in Scotland and the fallout from that, plus questions over his leadership abilities dominated the opinion sections of the newspapers.

The Daily Mail

Janet Street-Porter asked who was in charge of Number 10 and said Downing Street was fast turning into Calamity Central.

“The Prime Minister, six MP’s and two aides are self-isolating after being ‘pinged’ by our ‘world beating’ Test and Trace app,” she said. “So - at a critical moment with Covid compliance fatigue setting in the British government is being run by remote control.”

After the dramatic exit of Dominic Cummings and ‘Funky Chicken man Cain’, she said, it didn’t seem unreasonable to wonder who was at the helm.

“Is it Princess Nut Nut (as Dominic Cummings is said to have dubbed Mr Johnson’s fiancee Carrie Symonds) or maybe Dilyn the dog, allegedly the source of much anguish after a newspaper erroneously claimed that Ms Symonds has tired of the loveable rogue,” she asked.

She said it was clear Symonds was no Denis Thatcher, content to play golf and take a back seat.

“It must be galling for all the other super-bright women who have stood as parliamentary candidates for the Tories and not been selected, that here’s someone who went from being a glamorous press officer to having a chance to push her thoughts and her dreams directly into the ear of the person running the country.

“The whole affair reveals more about why Boris Johnson is a disastrous Prime Minister than it does about Carrie Symonds,” she concluded.

The Guardian

Marina Hyde said Sabotage was Boris Johnson’s middle name and his continued failure to act in the Government’s interest had plagued his career.

“The past couple of days have been an object lesson in how difficult it is for a government to get things back on an even keel when you have a character like Boris Johnson saying cosmically inept things in public,” she said. “He told a Zoom call of 67 northern MPs on Monday that devolution has been “a disaster north of the border” and was “Tony Blair’s biggest mistake.”

The fallout, she said, was swift and predictable.

“How on earth is a unionist prime minister supposed to counter the increasingly consistent majority polls in favour of Scottish independence when you have a high-profile figure such as Boris Johnson making imbecilic and unhelpful interjections such as this?,” she asked. “The incendiary Zoom remarks set in train another familiar chain of events: the scrambling of the prime minister’s Downing Street officials to defuse a needless row started by Boris Johnson.”

She said the Prime Minister repeatedly acted as his own disloyal backbencher.

“He continues to play Falstaff to his own Prince Hal,” she said. “It’s no surprise that Boris Johnson’s Downing Street is slapdash, chaotic, hypocritical, dilatory, inattentive and a place of endless drama and infighting – because his own head always has been. We’re stuck with a prime minister who can’t even stay true to himself.”

The Daily Express

Annabelle Sanderson said that when Dominic Cummings left Downing Street in the full glare of the media it was clear this was no happy ending - or even an ending at all.

“ But whilst there may have been cries of glee around Westminster and veritable gloating in the grey corridors of Brussels, there is no reason to assume that Boris’ better half Carrie Symonds will win the day,” she said. “Because what her actions have done is further weaken a Prime Minister who has already lost the confidence of many millions of people who voted for him.”

She said Nigel Farage has announced that he already has more than 3000 people signed up to be candidates for his newly named ‘Reform UK’ party in next year’s elections.

“Mr Farage may have never won a seat in Westminster but there can be no doubt he is one of the most influential politicians of our age and this new party, which is campaigning against the Government’s failed approach to tackling Covid-19 will take significant support from Boris.

“Carrie might think of herself as Queen Bee of Downing Street but it’s unlikely she has the guts or skill to beat Farage at what he does best: the underdog fighting for the support of the real people of this country.”