First Tory MP calls for Boris Johnson to resign over police lockdown fine

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The first Tory MP has broken cover to call for Boris Johnson to resign after he received a fine for breaching covid lockdown rules in Downing Street.

Nigel Mills, MP for Amber Valley, is thought to be the first Tory backbencher to call for the Prime Minister to quit after he was contacted by the Metropolitan Police for attending his birthday party on June 19, 2020.

The PM, his wife Carrie and Chancellor Rishi Sunak all received fines from the police on Tuesday.

Johnson and Sunak resisted calls for their resignations – insisting they were keen to now get on with the job.

Asked if he thought the PM’s position was untenable, Mills told PA: “Yeah, I think for a prime minister in office to be given a fine and accept it and pay it for breaking the laws that he introduced… is just an impossible position.



Nigel Mills, MP for Amber Valley, has called for Boris Johnson to resign
Nigel Mills, MP for Amber Valley, has called for Boris Johnson to resign

“We’ve every right to expect higher standards of people making these laws… so the idea that he can survive having broken one and accepted he’s broken (it), I just think is impossible.”

Asked if Parliament should be recalled to enable a change as soon as possible, Mills said: “It would be almost impossible to recall Parliament before Tuesday when we’re back anyway.”

“There’s almost zero chance that a motion of confidence in the House of Commons would be lost. So we can all send our letters to Sir Graham Brady… to be honest though, I’d be very surprised if he either resigns or there’s 180 of us that want rid of him.

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“So I think he will carry on for now.”

Nigel Mills said he is “not convinced” by the argument that it is not the right time for a change in leadership in the UK, given the crisis in Ukraine.

He added: “I have two comments on that. The first one is, when will Ukraine be any better than it is now? If you told me this crisis would be over in three months’ time, then you might say, ‘well OK , let’s get this done (then) the Prime Minister can meet his fate’.

“But the Ukraine crisis could last for a very, very long time. Are we saying there’s no chance of a change of prime minister for years?

“The second thing I’d say… France are having an election – and they’re one of the three biggest parts of Nato. So if they can have an election with the alternative candidate being someone who probably (has) a radically different policy in relation to Ukraine than President (Emmanuel) Macron, whereas I don’t think any of the leadership contenders we would have would have a different policy to the Prime Minister.

“So there wouldn’t really be any uncertainty that we would keep sending them as many weapons as we can and they want, and as much aid as we can, but we’re not going to be intervening. So I’m not convinced .”

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps defended the Prime Minister, saying he is “human” and did not knowingly break the law.

Asked on Sky News how Johnson can “possibly remain in office”, he said: “Everyone is human, people sometimes make mistakes.”

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It comes as dozens of Tory MPs have shown their support for the Prime Minister on social media, with cabinet ministers praising his leadership during Covid and Brexit and pointing to the war in Ukraine.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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