A Brighton MP told Boris Johnson his constituents believe he is a liar in the House of Commons today.
Brighton Kemptown MP Lloyd Russell-Moyle then told the prime minister: “I would prefer to be led by a lawyer than a liar” – a retort to Mr Johnson’s earlier jibe at Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer that he is a lawyer, not a leader.
'I would prefer to be led by a lawyer than a liar,' Lloyd Russell-Moyle, Brighton Kemptown MP, exclaims – before being told to withdraw his comment #PMQshttps://t.co/myQchmenxy pic.twitter.com/3FAGubdeIS
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The exchange came during Prime Minister’s Question Time in the House of Commons this afternoon.
Earlier, Sir Keir said: “I think the Prime Minister said yes, he agrees the code does apply to him. Therefore, if he misled Parliament he must resign.
“On December 1, the Prime Minister told this House in relation to parties during lockdown: ‘All guidance was followed completely in Number 10’, from that despatch box.
“On December 8 the Prime Minister told this House: ‘I have been repeatedly assured since these allegations emerged there was no party’. So since he acknowledges the ministerial code applies to him, will he now resign?”
Mr Johnson replied: “No, Mr Speaker. Since he asked about Covid restrictions, let me just remind the House, and indeed remind the country, that he has been relentlessly opportunistic throughout.
“He has flip-flopped from one side to the other, he would have kept us in lockdown in the summer, he would have taken us back into lockdown at Christmas.
“It is precisely because we didn’t listen to Captain Hindsight that we have the fastest-growing economy in the G7 and we have got all the big calls right.”
Later, Mr Lloyd Russell-Moyle said: “He (Prime Minister Boris Johnson) didn’t need the excuse of a birthday to have a party but it did help, didn’t it?
“When he had groups of people singing to him when gatherings indoor were illegal and communal signing was banned. My constituents think that he has lied. My constituents think that he lied to this House and my constituents think that he lied to them when he was partying…”
He added: “So, I would prefer to be led by a lawyer than a liar. Will he now resign?”
Commons Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle asked him to withdraw the comment as it is considered not within the boundaries of parliamentary etiquette to call another member a liar.
Mr Russell-Moyle said: “I withdraw it. That’s what my constituents think.”
Mr Johnson replied: “Well, I think that the honourable gentleman, I am afraid, in everything he said just now, plainly doesn’t know what he is talking about.
“What I can tell him and his constituents is that irrespective of what they want to focus on, and I understand why they do, this Government is going to get on with the job.”
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