Heywood and Middleton MP backs Prime Minister despite ‘shocking’ Partygate revelations


The MP for Heywood and Middleton has thrown his support behind the Prime Minister, despite admitting the Partygate revelations are ‘shocking’.

Chris Clarkson, Conservative MP for Heywood and Middleton said there was ‘clearly a lack of leadership’, which led to 126 fines for Downing Street staff, including Prime Minister Boris Johnson who broke lockdown rules.

However, he says that the Prime Minister has ‘apologised’ and has ‘committed himself to ensuring nothing like this happens in the future’.

He now says all attention must be focused on challenges facing the country such as the invasion of Ukraine and the ongoing cost of living crisis.

Mr Clarkson said: “The final report from Sue Gray with regards to ‘Partygate’ and the various on goings at No10 have been shocking.

“There was clearly a lack of leadership within the team with regard to the correct way to proceed.

“I understand that No10 is a workplace, and the 24 hour nature of political work in this type of ‘bubble’ obviously caused some inappropriate behaviours. The Prime Minister has apologised for his lack of leadership in his own team.

“We are all working hard on current issues and the priorities of the British people: strengthening our economy, creating jobs and opportunities, levelling up the whole United Kingdom, supporting Ukraine’s continued resistance to Putin’s barbaric invasion, and easing the burden of high-energy prices on hard-working families which was addressed by the Chancellor today. The Prime Minister has my full support in this.”

Chris Clarkson says he supports Boris Johnson depsite hime being fined for breaching lockdown rules. (Photo: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire)

Mr Clarkson also noted how the Covid breaches in Downing Street would have affected his constituents who may have had to miss weddings, birthdays and funerals due to the lockdown rules.

He added: “As someone who adhered carefully to the rules, I know how very hard these past two years has been for my constituents in Heywood and Middleton.  

“I have been made aware of many people who had desperately difficult circumstances to go through during the lockdown periods. Nothing I can say will change that for them, and I can only pass on my thoughts and regards to those who have been challenged in this way.

“Amongst the exceptional work done by public servants both in Government and beyond, some mistakes were sadly made. We have to learn from the mistakes but take pride in some of the extraordinary achievements.”



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