‘I overwhelmingly feel it is my job to get on and deliver’, says Johnson after Gray report
Security guards and cleaners, who work in government offices, will protest against Whitehall’s “culture of disrespect” towards low-paid workers outside of Downing Street.
The demonstration comes after Sue Gray’s report slammed “unacceptable” behaviour toward No 10 cleaning and security staff.
The protest will take place on Friday, according to United Voices of the World (UVW) union, and will put more pressure on Boris Johnson who has faced three Tory MPs demanding his resignation since the report was published.
It comes as the chair of parliament’s privileges committee has said it is “absolutely certain” that Boris Johnson will be forced to resign if the cross-party panel finds he has misled the Commons.
Boris Johnson’s spokesman also apologised for misleading journalists on Partygate.
The Sue Gray report laid bare a catalogue of drunkenness and damage at the illegal events, which led to 126 fines by the Metropolitan Police.
Watch: Rachel Reeves says Labour is winning ‘battle of ideas’
Rachel Reeves says Labour is winning ‘battle of ideas’
Thomas Kingsley26 May 2022 16:09
Labour buys advertising on the Conservative Home website to display the government’s Covid restriction campaign
Labour has bought up all the advertising on the Conservative Home website to display a spin on the government’s former Covid campaign warning the public against breaking lockdown rules.
The website, which is the online base for Tory members, will now display several websites with the advert reading: “Look into her eyes and tell her you still back Boris Johnson.”
The 2021 advertisement campaign had a photo of a sick person with the caption: “Look her in the eyes and tell her you never bend the rules.”
Tory members will now see the ad when they enter the website.
Thomas Kingsley26 May 2022 15:35
Boris Johnson ‘set the bar so low as prime minister’ Angela Rayner says
Deputy Labour leader Angela Rayner said Boris Johnson has “set the bar so low as Prime Minister” following the publication of the Sue Gray report.
Ms Rayner said when he was appointed prime minister in 2019, Mr Johnson “offered the people what they wanted” and found him “quite refreshing”.
She told Loose Women: “I think one of the problems now is that he’s been proven to be a liar and somebody who is incompetent in office, certainly at a time when we had the pandemic.
“I think it does create a problem when you’ve set the bar so low as the prime minister of a country that you can literally break the law in office, and then it’s like, ‘oh, well, sorry, I didn’t know about it. Everybody else is to blame.”
Thomas Kingsley26 May 2022 15:25
Boris Johnson said his audiences with the Queen are ‘always immensely comforting’
Boris Johnson said his audiences with the Queen are “always immensely comforting”.
He said: “I know prime ministers are not supposed to relay their conversations with the Queen. And I will not, except to say that her knowledge and understanding of politics and world affairs is profound.”
The prime minister added: “There have been times when I’ve been scrambling to remember a historical date or the name of some African capital and she has got there first, and when it comes to some subjects, anything equestrian I am certainly nowhere.
“And can I speak for every prime minister who has ever had an audience with Her Majesty when I say that our conversations are always immensely comforting, because she has seen the sweep of it. And she has seen the cycle from gloom to elation and every time her country under her has gone forward from strength to strength.”
Mr Johnson went on: “No monarch, by her efforts and dedication and achievement, better deserves the attribute of greatness. And for me, she is already Elizabeth The Great.”
Thomas Kingsley26 May 2022 15:10
No ‘clear evidence’ PM breached regulations multiple times, Met chief says
Sir Stephen House said there he doesn’t believe there is clear evidence that Boris Johnson breached regulations multiple times.
The acting commissioner is giving evidence to London Assembly’s police and crime committee defending the Metropolitan Police’s handling of the probe.
Thomas Kingsley26 May 2022 14:56
Met Police acted with ‘integrity’ over lockdown party inquiry and made decisions ‘based on facts’, says Met chief
The Met Police acted with “integrity” during its Partygate investigation and officers made decisions “based on the facts and were proper”, the force’s acting commissioner has said.
Sir Stephen House, giving evidence to the London Assembly’s police and crime committee, defended the nearly four-month investigation into lockdown-breaking parties in Downing Street and Whitehall.
The investigation has come under criticism for only fining Boris Johnson once.
Asked why the prime minister did not receive a fine for attending a leaving party for his former communications director Lee Cain on 13 November 2020, Sir Stephen said he was “confident of the integrity of the decisions” taken.
“The explanations that were given in the questionnaire were all considered carefully,” he said.
“Some gatherings we decided were not work related, and some we decided were work related.”
Thomas Kingsley26 May 2022 14:50
BREAKING: Cleaners to protest outside Downing Street over ‘culture of disrespect’
Security guards and cleaners, who work across government departments, will protest against Whitehall’s “culture of disrespect” towards low paid workers outside of Downing Street.
The demonstration will take place from 5:30pm on Friday, according to United Voices of the World (UVW) union.
This follows revelations in Sue Gray’s partygate report, published on Thursday, of multiple examples of “unacceptable” treatment of security and cleaning staff.
Read the full story below from our race correspondent, Nadine White:
Thomas Kingsley26 May 2022 14:26
MPs’ sitting dates
The Commons summer recess is due to begin after the close of business on Thursday July 21, with MPs returning on Monday September 5.
Conference recess will begin at the close of business on Thursday September 22, returning on Monday October 17.
November recess will begin at the close of business on Wednesday November 9, returning on Monday November 14.
Christmas recess will begin at the close of business on Wednesday December 21, returning on Monday January 9.
Jane Dalton26 May 2022 14:15
Rayner says she would quit if police say she broke rules
Deputy Labour leader Angela Rayner has reiterated that she would resign from her position if she was found to have broken lockdown rules over “beergate”.
Ms Rayner insisted that she had not broken the rules after a Labour team had spent a day campaigning for the local elections in Durham in April last year.
Asked whether she would still resign if Durham Police found she had broken the rules, she told ITV’s Loose Women: “100% because integrity matters. This is why I’m so confident about it. I didn’t see my granddaughter through that period. I had two relatives that died. We all suffered our own personal stories around it…
“We, as MPs, we said ‘these are the rules, this is what you have to stick by’. If you break those rules, and you get a fixed penalty notice, you can’t be in office. I can’t be in office if I do that. It’s not OK.”
Ms Rayner also said when he was appointed Prime Minister in 2019, Mr Johnson “offered the people what they wanted” and found him “quite refreshing”.
But she added: “I think one of the problems now is that he’s been proven to be a liar and somebody who is incompetent in office, certainly at a time when we had the pandemic.
“I think it does create a problem when you’ve set the bar so low as the Prime Minister of a country that you can literally break the law in office, and then it’s like, ‘oh, well, sorry, I didn’t know about it. Everybody else is to blame’.”
Jane Dalton26 May 2022 14:10
Government admits spying on MPs’ emails was unlawful
The government has admitted that spying on MPs’ communications by security services was unlawful, after a settlement was reached at the European Court of Human Rights.
A declaration signed by the government said the UK’s bulk interception practices at the time were “not in accordance with the law … or prescribed by law”, writes Lizzie Dearden:
Jane Dalton26 May 2022 13:50