James Slack

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Person.png James Slack  Rdf-entity.pngRdf-icon.png
(spin doctor, Editor-in-Chief)
James Slack at Policy Exchange - 2011 (6455166555) (cropped).jpg
PR-manager for UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson

Employment.png Downing Street Director of Communications

In office
1 January 2021 - 19 March 2021

Employment.png Downing Street Press Secretary Wikipedia-icon.png

In office
18 April 2017 - 1 January 2021

Employment.png Prime Minister's Official Spokesperson

In office
10 February 2017 - 31 December 2020

James Slack [1] is a British political advisor and former journalist who served as the Downing Street Director of Communications for Prime Minister Boris Johnson between January and March 2021.[2][3]


Previously Home Affairs editor of the Daily Mail, he was appointed political editor of the newspaper in October 2015 in succession to James Chapman, who had been appointed as spokesman for George Osborne, then Chancellor of the Exchequer.[4]

At the Daily Mail, as Home Affairs editor, Slack was involved in the campaign to stop Gary McKinnon, who suffers from Asperger's Syndrome, from being extradited to the United States to face charges relating to computer hacking.[5][6]

Slack wrote the controversial "Enemies of the People" front-page article on 4 November 2016 which criticised senior judges in England's High Court of Justice who had made a decision the Daily Mail did not agree with.[7]

At the end of January 2017 it appeared that Slack was to be appointed as the Prime Minister's Official Spokesperson,[8][9] which was confirmed on 10 February 2017.[10] He remained in the post after Boris Johnson took over the government on 24 July 2019.[11]

Following the announcement that the then-Downing Street Director of Communications, Lee Cain, had resigned from government and would leave his post at the end of December 2020 it was confirmed that Slack would assume this position in the new year.[12] In March 2021 he left Downing Street to join The Sun as deputy editor[13] in succession to Keith Poole.[14]


  1. https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/830277/Resignation-Honours-2019.pdf
  2. https://www.gov.uk/government/news/max-blain-will-be-the-new-prime-ministers-official-spokesperson%7C
  3. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/theresa-may-daily-mail-political-editor-james-slack-appointment-a7557696.html
  4. http://www.pressgazette.co.uk/daily-mails-james-slack-promoted-to-political-editor-alton-and-oakeshott-in-talks-about-joining-title/
  5. http://www.pressgazette.co.uk/mum-praises-daily-mail-non-stop-support-gary-mckinnon-wins-fight-against-extradition
  6. http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/gary-mckinnon-extradition-janice-sharp-home-secretary-394885
  7. https://books.google.com/books?id=ue9IDwAAQBAJ&pg=PA56
  8. http://www.politico.eu/article/theresa-may-gets-her-alastair-campbell/
  9. https://www.theguardian.com/media/2017/jan/31/journalist-james-slack-daily-mail-theresa-may-spokesman-no-10
  10. https://www.gov.uk/government/news/prime-ministers-official-spokesperson-appointed-james-slack
  11. https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-07-26/new-u-k-prime-minister-johnson-faces-same-old-brexit-problems quote=Johnson's spokesman, James Slack, suggested there's little point to talks unless the EU accepts that position [...]
  12. https://www.nottinghampost.com/news/nottingham-news/former-nottingham-post-reporter-become-4698413
  13. https://www.cityam.com/boris-johnsons-director-of-comms-to-join-the-sun-as-deputy-editor-in-chief/
  14. https://www.news.co.uk/2021/03/james-slack-appointed-deputy-editor-in-chief-the-sun/