The government of Boris Johnson It goes from scandal to scandal. And the last one, called the ‘partygate‘by the British press, that is, of the Christmas festivities that were supposedly held last year in Downing Street when restrictions were in place to prevent the spread of the Covid-19 prevented it, has a new chapter: in the office of Simon Case, the cabinet secretary and in charge of carrying out the investigation on whether the rules dictated by the Government itself were broken in these Christmas celebrations, one of them would have been celebrated.
This was revealed by the page Guido Fawkes, a right-wing political information website whose editor is a well-known blogger in the country, Paul Staines.
It is one of the most widely read sources, and most feared, in Westminster, precisely because it brings to light information that is not very convenient for politicians. The news fell like a bomb in a population exhausted from the Executive scandals, and in the midst of a context of fatigue due to the pandemic.
Government sources told the BBC that Simon Case’s position as head of the research, which focuses on the events of Downing Street on November 27, December 15 and December 18, as well as the Ministry of Education on December 10, to which one more is now added. Supposedly, just a year ago, on December 17, invitations were sent with the text “Christmas Party!” about fifteen or twenty people to attend a Christmas celebration in Case’s office. In a statement that has provoked jokes and annoyances, and more difficult to explain than squaring the circle, a source told the BBC that Case “did not participate” in the party, but “was present at the event”, in which they raced wine and prosecco amid music and Christmas decorations, as confirmed by two officials present to the media ‘Politico’ and ‘The Independent’. The latter newspaper further reported Thursday that Johnson met with other officials for a drink in Downing Street during the first lockdown in May 2020.
Failure to comply with the rules
Meanwhile, the opposition hastened to accuse Johnson of “setting the tone” for the civil service and the rest of the government regarding the violation of the rules. This was pointed out by the deputy leader of the Labor Party, Angela Rayner, who assured that “with each new revelation there is growing evidence of a culture of turning a blind eye to the rules.” “The Labor Party made it clear when the investigation began that the person in charge must be uncompromising and capable of giving a fair and independent judgment. These new revelations put that in doubt, “he denounced.
The leader of the Scottish National Party (SNP) in Westminster, Ian Blackford, wrote a letter to Johnson that he reproduced on his Twitter account in which he notes that “the cabinet secretary’s internal investigation cannot be trusted.” “The public cannot have any confidence in an investigation conducted by someone allegedly involved in the same matter as being investigated.”
The ‘partygate’ is perhaps the scandal that has had the most consequences for Boris Johnson. After the news of the holidays broke, his image plummeted in polls, members of his own party and the opposition have asked for explanations, he had to apologize in Parliament and, finally, he suffered a blow in the local elections of North Shropshire in which the liberal democrat Helen Morgan became the successor to the disgraced ‘Tory’ MP Owen Paterson. According to analysts and politicians who have given their opinion on what happened in this conservative bastion, anger at the illegal parties would have had a lot to do with the citizens’ vote of punishment.