The PM has faced even more calls to quit over partygate fines in PMQs, but what’s next for Boris Johnson?
Today, Wednesday April 20, Johnson faced other ministers and his opposition in PMQs just days after giving his ‘wholehearted apology’ after receiving fixed penalty notices for breaking lockdown rules and now a vote will be held in Parliament to decide whether a full investigation should go forward to see if the PM lied to the House.
What happened to get here?
As part of the on-going police investigation held over the alleged parties in Downing Street during the height of lockdown has led to Johnson and Chancellor Rishi Sunak being given fixed-penalty notices for breaking COVID rules, as has the PM’s wife, Carrie Johnson.
On Tuesday, the Metropolitan police said it had issued 30 more fines over the gatherings held at Downing Street which include the one to the PM and Chancellor.
Today at PMQs Johnson faced even more calls to quite from the leader of the Labour party, Sir Keir Starmer. During his questioning to the PM Starmer pointed out several MPs and civil servants had resigned for breaking lockdown rules including the PM’s former press secretary Allegra Stratton, the former health minister, Matt Hancock, Professor Neil Ferguson who resigned after admitting to an ‘error of judgement’.
Starmer then went on to ask if Johnson accepts he broke the law, to which he said he does. So, the question on everyone’s lips is ‘what’s next for Boris Johnson’?
What’s Next For Boris Johnson?
Tomorrow the house will be held on whether a special parliamentary investigation should be launched into Boris Johnson’s Partygate denials – basically, whether they think he lied to the House or not.
Opposition parties, including Starmer’s Labour, have called for a special body known as the privileges committee to look into if Johnson deliberately misled MPs.
Although Starmer tabled this motion six other parties have supported it going forward including: Ian Blackford, the SNP leader at Westmister, Ed Davey, the Lib Dem leader, Liz Saville-Roberts, the Plaid Cymru leader at Westminster, Colum Eastwood, the SDLP leader, Caroline Lucas, the Green party MP, and Stephen Farry, the Alliance party MP.
If it goes ahead MPs on the privileges committee will the decide whether Johnson deliberately misled parliament and anyonw who ‘knowingly mislead Parliament will be expected to offer their resignation to the Prime Minister’.
However, if it comes to the committee it’s an incredibly difficult thing for those MPs to actually decide on – so Johnson could ultimately be in the clear.