Person of Interest

London’s Mayor Challenges PM

Why can’t American politicians give quotations like this one, from Boris Johnson, mayor of London, to Gordon Brown, Britain’s prime minister: “Bring it on, you great big quivering gelatinous invertebrate jelly of indecision.” (This gem, about possible elections June 4, comes from today’s Wall Street Journal profile.) The journalist turned popular mayor has long been known for his ability to provide a great, and sometimes ridiculous, quote. But he’s increasingly becoming better known as an effective member of the Tory Party and its potential leader if David Cameron, the current leader, stumbles in his bid to force Labour from power in the next election. Though Johnson unexpectedly won election to the mayoralty in 2008, he has thrived in the job, helping the city thorough the financial crisis and passing small but important laws, like banning alcohol from public transportation, something that didn’t win him many fans among the city’s youth. “Thousands of young people were hurling execration at my name,” he said. “I thought: This is fantastic. It took Margaret Thatcher 10 years before she had mobs of urban youth denouncing her.”