Remembering the time Boris Johnson ran to be rector of Edinburgh and came THIRD
A Tory MP has just roasted him about it at the Conservative Party Conference
Boris Johnson has been roasted by fellow Conservative MP, David Mundell, over the time that he ran to be rector of the University of Edinburgh, and lost dramatically, coming in third.
In the 2006 election, BoJo lost out to Mark Ballard, the Green Party MSP who took the title, and lagged behind a former editor of the Scotsman, Mangus Linklater.
Ballard also received the biggest turnout for a rectorial election that the university had ever seen.
At a fringe event at the Conservative Party Conference yesterday, Conservative MP David Mundell, Secretary of State for Scotland, made fun of the fact that the Foreign Secretary had failed at becoming rector.
When asked about BoJos potential appeal to young voters, he said: “I’m sure none of my colleagues indulge in hypothetical questions, although I do recall Boris Johnson once stood for rector of Edinburgh University and you can look at the result of that.”
With students in 2006 being the first to be charged £3,000 tuition fees, up from £1,000, it is thought that his support for top-up fees damaged his campaign.
Speaking to the Scotsman in 2006, Johnson said: “As the Tory higher education spokesman at Westminster I want to learn all about students’ problems and the challenges facing a university like Edinburgh.
“I’m encouraged by the number of student volunteers offering to help me and am delighted they consider me up to the job.”
However, the MP was apparently drenched in beer when protesters attempted to hijack the launch of his campaign at the Centro Bar, which was in Pollock Halls at the time.
The student protester asked to take a photograph and, once close, threw a beer over BoJo.
The MP said at the time: “It would be fair to say the people against me were in the minority but they made a lot of noise that went on a long time.
“I tried to make a speech but I couldn’t hear anything because of the noise. At the end, someone very kindly poured a pint of beer over my head.
“I am most grateful because it was the first of many drinks I received one way or the other over the evening.”
Johnson then toured student pubs through New Town, including The Crags, The Privy Council, Po Na Na and even Opal, before returning to Pollock to spend the night in a basic room in Lee House. Apparently he didn’t even have an en suite.