These days, how much time he spends talking about Covid restrictions is the easiest barometer for measuring how much politcal trouble Boris Johnson is in. We saw this last month – during the first wave of the Downing Street parties scandal, he moved England to Plan B restrictions.
And it appears the same might be about to happen again. Newspapers are full of talk that Plan B could be dropped as early as January 26th. This would mean fewer settings where wearing a face mask is mandatory, as well as ditching vaccine passports – England brought them into force on December 15th last year.
This would mean Johnson’s policy had lasted just 42 days between introducing them and scrapping them. Some might have you believe he’s doing this because the worst of Omicron is behind us. This remains to be seen, but Johnson would be doing it purely to get mutinous Tory MPs who hate the policy off his back.
But if a government policy can be scrapped within just six weeks of its introduction, doesn’t it call into question how effective it was? Because how much vaccine passports do to slow Covid down is highly questionable – with a court in Spain previously saying they could be counter productive.
This is ultimately why this blog doesn’t back them. And with Boris Johnson set to make a move on this next week – assuming Sue Gray hasn’t declared checkmate on his career before then – it raises questions about the three devolved administrations in the UK. Scotland and Wales have given nightclubs the all-clear to reopen on January 24th and 28th respectively, but there’s been no word on vaccine passports.
If anyone can pinpoint me to a study anywhere which shows vaccine passports do actually work, please send it to me. Because I certainly can’t find one…