PMQs: Boris Johnson Condemned For Giving 'Predatory' Chris Pincher A Job

Keir Starmer savages the PM's "bluster" as more Tory MPs resign from the government.
House of Commons via PA Wire/PA Images

Keir Starmer has savaged Boris Johnson for keeping “predatory” Chris Pincher in a government job when he was aware of allegations about his behaviour.

The prime minister has been hit with a wave of ministerial resignations following the revelations about his former deputy chief whip.

Speaking during PMQs, Starmer read out the testimony of a man who accused Pincher of sexual assault.

“He knew the accused minister had previously committed predatory behaviour but he promoted him to a position of power anyway. Why?”

The Labour leader told Tory MPs: “They’re all sitting there as if this is normal behaviour.

“When that young man reported his attack to a government whip, she asked him if he was gay, when he said that he was, she replied ‘that doesn’t make it straightforward’.

“Will he apologise for those disgraceful comments on behalf of this government?”

Johnson replied that Pincher no longer had his job, nor the Conservative whip.

The PM added: “I want to say to him that I abhor bullying and abuse of power anywhere in parliament, in this party or in any other party.”

But Johnson also refused to deny he had once made light of the allegations by branding his ally: “Pincher by name, Pincher by nature.”

Starmer told him: “I’m not asking for bluster and half-truth. We’ve all had enough of that. Yes or no?”

Johnson has said that in “hindsight”, he should have realised that Pincher would have not changed.

Downing Street had initially said he had no knowledge of “specific” accusations against Pincher when he appointed him to the whip’s office in 2019.

But No.10 was then forced to admit the PM had been told about formal accusations against Pincher but decided to give him a job anyway.

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