MPs are currently voting in favor of Partygate’s report, which finds Johnson misled Parliament
Boris Johnson’s allies have been accused of undermining democracy through a “coordinated campaign of meddling” that put “unprecedented” pressure on the committee investigating whether the ex-Prime Minister lied to Parliament about Partygate.
The Privileges Committee has released its new special report, in which it highlights “disturbing” comments from Tory MPs who criticized the cross-party MPs during their 14-month inquiry.
Johnson’s allies have called the investigation a “witch hunt” and “kangaroo court.” Those named include Nadine Dorries, Jacob Rees-Mogg, Andrea Jenkyns and Priti Patel. MPs now appear ready to vote on whether to sanction them.
In its scathing report earlier this month, the committee found Mr Johnson had lied to Parliament about Partygate and recommended a 90-day suspension.
However, he escaped this punishment by resigning as an MP after being informed of the results beforehand. Shortly thereafter, he accepted a new role as a columnist Daily mail.
The new report will be another blow to Rishi Sunak, who has been desperate to put an end to the Johnson era.
We’ll be pausing the blog updates for this afternoon, thanks for following us here.
For those who want to catch up on today’s events, my fellow lobbyists have this lengthy report detailing the Privileges Committee’s allegations against Boris Johnson’s allies.
To explore the rest The IndependentClick here to read more about the political output of .
Alternatively, you can keep scrolling to catch up on the day’s developments as we reported them:
Andy GregoryJune 29, 2023 3:52 p.m
Anonymous resistance in the ranks of the Tories in the wake of the Privileges Committee
The special report on interference in the Privileges Committee inquiry was met with disdain by some Tory MPs, underscoring the difficulty of walking a tightrope faced by Rishi Sunak – who previously promised “integrity, professionalism and accountability at all levels”.
In one of the less edifying comments to The Express After the report was released this morning, a “Tory source” was quoted as saying: “This report would make Chairman Mao blush.”
“MPs have the right to speak freely on matters of their own procedure. This is an ancient right of Parliament. The Privileges Committee diminishes the rights of parliamentarians, which is incredibly dangerous. This is not North Korea.”
An anonymous MP was quoted as saying he had called the committee “clowns”, while another told the newspaper: “The committee has vilified elected MPs for doing nothing more than upholding Britain’s great tradition of freedom of expression .”
Andy GregoryJune 29, 2023 3:45 p.m
Watch: Suella Braverman says she disagrees with Rwanda verdict ‘out of respect’
Suella Braverman says she disagrees with Rwanda’s verdict “out of respect”.
Andy GregoryJune 29, 2023 3:27 p.m
Angela Rayner slams Privileges Committee’s ‘disgusting’ treatment
Labor Deputy Leader Angela Rayner has described the behavior of the MPs highlighted in the Privileges Committee report as “disgusting” and “clear intimidation” when she and Keir Starmer visited Selby.
“MPs – cross-party MPs, this is not a specific party – they are doing a job on behalf of Parliament and to try to undermine it in that way is disgusting behaviour,” Ms Rayner said.
“Rishi Sunak is still not addressing this behavior. We have seen the conduct and conduct that fell below the ministerial code and below the standards expected by Parliament, even by ministers involved in it, and yet Rishi Sunak promised a fresh start and we did not see that.
“We had this constant carousel. Every day there is new material about their behavior and it undermines Parliament.
“Labour set up our Ethics and Integrity Committee. We have said we will take action and it is time for the Prime Minister to do what he promised the people of this country and clean up his party.
“As we have seen here in Selby, Conservative MPs no longer seem to believe that being an MP is a public duty. They consider it their private endeavor to achieve what they can as individuals.”
Andy GregoryJune 29, 2023 3:19 p.m
New Partygate report shows Tories ‘unable to govern’, says Starmer
Sir Keir Starmer said the Privileges Committee’s Partygate report was “further evidence of a divided party incapable of governing”.
During a visit to Selby, Sir Keir told the PA news agency: “Rishi Sunak is just too weak to get along with his MPs and you have yet another story of wrongdoing by Tory MPs and at the same time we’re in the middle in a cost of living crisis.
“The moment you ask the government to tighten up, they just sit and argue about the behavior of their own MPs and that’s one of the main reasons we’re in this economic mess right now. And it is the families who pay the price.”
Andy GregoryJune 29, 2023 2:55 p.m
Starmer and Rayner greet Tory activists
Keir Starmer and Angela Rayner were greeted by Tory Party activists at Selby railway station as they campaign for the Selby and Ainsty by-elections.
But the Labor leader and his deputy are choosing to seize the moment.
Adam ForestJune 29, 2023 2:39 p.m
Watch: Nicola Sturgeon is slammed for using the Covid probe to criticize the ‘fake economy’ of Brexit
Nicola Sturgeon has been slammed for using the Covid probe to criticize the “wrong economy” of Brexit.
Andy GregoryJune 29, 2023 2:11 p.m
‘Jesus Christ returns as Tory leader’ failed to win election, says former No10 adviser
Our political correspondent Adam Forest Reports:
According to a former No 10 aide, even the returning Messiah could not win the next general election for the Conservative Party.
“If Jesus Christ returns to earth today, puts aside theology and becomes leader of the Conservative Party, the Conservative Party will be doomed in the next election,” said Tory expert Tim Montgomerie.
He said BBC Politics Live there is nothing the Tories can do now to change their “fortune” – but they will continue to “play the card” and promise to stop the boats.
Andy GregoryJune 29, 2023 1:55 p.m
No. 10 declines to criticize MEPs named in the Privileges Committee report
Downing Street declined to criticize the MPs named in the Privileges Committee report, instead citing earlier comments made by Rishi Sunak.
“You heard it straight from the Prime Minister himself. He said he supports and respects not only the work of the committee, which he believes has done a thorough job, but also the decision of the House of Representatives,” his official spokesman said.
He said Downing Street was aware of the need to avoid “swapping” the committee.
Asked whether the Prime Minister agrees with the objections of some of Boris Johnson’s allies that it is a matter of free speech, the speaker said: “It will be up to the House of Representatives to come to an opinion on Monday.” We did provided the time for this debate, but you have heard the Prime Minister speak about his respect for the committee.”
Andy GregoryJune 29, 2023 1:31 p.m
Sunak supports Goldsmith as Number 10 refuses to say if he will vote on the report’s findings
Rishi Sunak has confidence in Lord Goldsmith, Downing Street said after the Government Minister was named in the Privileges Committee report.
The Prime Minister’s official spokesman also declined to say whether Mr Sunak would vote in the House of Commons to support the report, which criticized and named several MPs and colleagues for putting pressure on the committee’s inquiry.
The spokesman said he would not advance the prime minister’s moves.
The Speaker declined to criticize Mr Goldsmith for his comments, referring to next month’s debate in the House of Commons, saying: “Individuals will then be able to voice their opinions.”
Mr Sunak was absent from the debate and vote earlier this month, where all but seven MPs voted to censure Boris Johnson, in line with the Privileges Committee’s recommendations.
Andy GregoryJune 29, 2023 1:07 p.m