Boris Johnson has been accused of ‘fat-shaming’ after making a joke about cake at Prime Minister’s Questions.
The prime minister appeared to mock SNP Westminster leader Ian Blackford’s weight as he responded to his calls for him to resign during today’s questions session in the Commons.
It comes after reports emerged this week that Mr Johnson was presented with a cake at an alleged birthday gathering of around 30 people in the Cabinet meeting room during the first lockdown.
READ MORE: Boris Johnson faces calls to resign and is accused of holding country in ‘contempt’ over lockdown parties in fiery PMQs
Mr Blackford referenced the allegations when he told Mr Johnson that an incoming tax hike to fund social care, expected in April, was “hanging like a guillotine while they eat cake” amid a cost of living crisis
Mr Johnson responded by laughing and quipped: “I don’t know who’s been eating more cake.”
Many people saw the joke as an attack on the MP’s weight, including Welsh MP Alex Davies-Jones, who tweeted: “Fat shaming to add to the long list of despicable behaviors from the Prime Minister.”
A number of other Twitter users accused the PM of fat-shaming.
Despite his comments, the PM said he and Mr Blackford ‘co-operate well’.
“Behind the scenes, people don’t get this, but actually we co-operate well and I want to continue to do so,” Mr Johnson said.
Wigan MP and shadow leveling up secretary Lisa Nandy hit out at Boris Johnson over his appearance, accusing him of thinking the police investigation into alleged rule-breaking was ‘funny’.
She tweeted: “So many people made sacrifices while the Prime Minister and his friends parted. Even now, as he’s investigated by the police for breaking the rules he made, he still seems to think it’s funny.”
Mr Johnson repeatedly rejected calls from MPs to resign as he faced questions in the House this afternoon.
He insisted he was “getting on with the job”, although he acknowledged there were people who “want me out of the way” for a variety of reasons.
His future hangs in the balance as Westminster awaits the release of senior official Sue Gray’s report into alleged lockdown-busting parties in No 10 and Whitehall.
The report is expected to be handed to No 10 on Wednesday, although it had not been submitted by the time Mr Johnson stood up to face MPs.
Labor leader Sir Keir Starmer suggested Mr Johnson had misled Parliament about Downing Street parties, something which would normally require a minister to resign.
Asked if he would now quit, the Prime Minister said: “No.”
Later, Labor MP for Leeds East Richard Burgon told MPs: “The Prime Minister for once needs to do the decent thing for once: For god’s sake, resign.”
Mr Johnson replied: “I don’t think there was a question there.
“There was an invitation for me to do what, of course, the Labor Party wants me to do, but I am not going to do it.”
George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.