Home » Starmer stunt falls flat: Tories INCREASE lead over Labour regardless of sleaze row
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Starmer stunt falls flat: Tories INCREASE lead over Labour regardless of sleaze row

The Conservatives have elevated their lead over Labour based on a brand new ballot – regardless of Boris Johnson being embroiled in ‘Wallpapergate’. 

On Thursday, Labour chief Sir Keir Starmer trolled the PM by choosing out wallpaper at a John Lewis retailer in Manchester.

The gag was a reference to experiences that the PM and accomplice Carrie Symonds had used £58,000 of Tory funds to renovate their Downing Road flat – apparently labelled a John Lewis nightmare by the couple. 

Nevertheless, regardless of the jibe and rising backlash after an incensed Mr Johnson furiously defended himself at Prime Minister’s Questions amid the scandal, the Tories have stretched their lead over Labour forward of Could’s native elections.

A YouGov ballot for The Occasions has discovered an 11-point hole between the Tories and Labour, with the Conservatives on 44 per cent, the identical as every week in the past, and Labour down one level on 33.   

The sizable lead comes regardless of greater than half of respondents agreeing that the Tories are ‘very sleazy and disreputable’.

Almost a 3rd additionally imagine that Mr Johnson is much less sincere than different politicians – whereas half suppose he did say he would relatively see the ‘our bodies pile excessive’ that put England into lockdown once more. 

Regardless of this, 40 per cent have a beneficial view of the Prime Minister, in comparison with simply 36 per cent for Sir Keir.   

A brand new YouGov ballot reveals the Conservatives have stretched their lead over Labour to 11 factors

The Labour chief was seen choosing out wallpaper on the division retailer’s Manchester web site, in a refined dig at Boris Johnson – however he stays behind the Tories within the polls

Regardless of rising backlash after an incensed Mr Johnson furiously defended himself at Prime Minister’s Questions amid the scandal, the Tories have stretched their lead over Labour forward of Could’s native elections

The polls bode badly for the Labour chief, who used his marketing campaign go to to Manchester to criticise Mr Johnson over wallpapergate. 

He was within the metropolis as a part of his campaigning forward of the native elections in Could – an election that may show a key indicator of the power of every of the events.

Mr Johnson in the meantime was on the marketing campaign in London as he teamed up with Chancellor Rishi Sunak on a go to to King Solomon Academy in Marylebone. 

Sir Keir’s dig obtained a blended response on Twitter, with some praising it as ‘prime trolling’ and others describing it as ‘infantile’.

One mentioned: ‘I am unsure what he is making an attempt to attain right here. Positive, he’ll get some reward from typical suspects on right here however is that this actually going to resonate with the voters of Hartlepool?

‘If something it makes Labour look much more out of contact.’ 

One other repsonded with their very own dig, this time on the collapse of Labour’s so known as ‘Crimson Wall’ of northern seats within the final election, by saying: ‘Simply what he must paper over that difficult pink wall.’

Others struck a extra impartial tone, with one saying: ‘Honest play. I do not significantly like him however his sense of humour has been popping out these days. He is been fairly humorous. 

It comes as an incensed Mr Johnson furiously defended himself at yesterday’s Prime Minister’s Questions over the ‘Wallpapergate’ row – by which he’s accused of utilizing £58,000 of Tory funds for a lavish refurbishment of his Downing Road flat. PicturedL 

It has been claimed that Mr Johnson and accomplice Carrie Symonds labelled the Downing Road flat – which he inherited from Prime Ministerial predecessor Theresa Could- a ‘John Lewis nightmare’. The Downing Road renovation was apparently spearheaded by Lulu Lytle – one among her designs is pictured right here

Others praised Sir Keir, with one saying: ‘He is on a roll.’ And one other harked again to Sir Keir’s time as Director of Public Prosecutions, saying: ‘In a forensic investigation, Sir Keir Starmer checks the price of the quantity 10 wallpaper.’ 

Boris Johnson says he ‘loves’ John Lewis amid ‘Wallpapergate’ row 

Boris Johnson right this moment claimed being portrayed as a snob about John Lewis was his principal remorse concerning the large furore over his lavish Downing Road flat refurb.  

The PM insisted the worst factor concerning the ‘farrago of nonsense’ – which incorporates an investigation by the elections watchdog into whether or not the legislation has been damaged – was the misrepresentation of his views concerning the retailer chain. 

‘I really like John Lewis!’ he instructed reporters on a go to to a faculty in London, saying he had nothing to ‘fear about’. 

The controversial overhaul is claimed to have been sparked as a result of his fiancee Carrie Symonds couldn’t stand the ‘John Lewis nightmare’ decor left by Theresa Could.  

The jokey response got here as Labour complained to the parliamentary requirements commissioner over allegations Mr Johnson didn’t declare Conservative contributions in the direction of the works – a cost that would even result in his suspension from the Home. 

Downing Road fears {that a} Tory paper path may depart Mr Johnson uncovered within the separate Electoral Fee probe into the murky funding of his grace-and-favour residence.

The PM and Ms Symonds face handing over emails and cellphone messages referring to the makeover.

They may be interviewed – together with former chief aide Dominic Cummings – because the watchdog appears at whether or not donations to foot the prices have been illegally stored secret. 

Though the inquiry is at the moment focused on the Conservative Social gathering relatively than Mr Johnson himself, issues have been voiced that its information may lead again to the premier.

‘The fear is that there could possibly be a paper path,’ a authorities supply instructed the Occasions. ‘There was a really restricted quantity of people that knew concerning the funding preparations at CCHQ. It isn’t clear how this may finish.’

Mr Johnson mentioned this afternoon that he would adjust to ‘no matter’ the Electoral Fee need, however he added: ‘I do not suppose there’s something to see right here.’ 


Mr Johnson was going through the prospect of a fourth inquiry into the financing of his lavish flat makeover final evening, after Labour reported him to Parliament’s sleaze watchdog.

The Prime Minister insisted yesterday that there was ‘nothing to see’ as he has now paid the £58,000 price overrun on the Downing Road flat he shares with fiancée Carrie Symonds.

He described the row as a ‘farrago of nonsense’.

However veteran former Labour minister Dame Margaret Hodge known as for a proper inquiry into allegations that the invoice was initially settled by the Conservative Social gathering, which was reimbursed by millionaire Tory donor Lord Brownlow.

In a letter to the Parliamentary Requirements Commissioner Kathryn Stone, Dame Margaret mentioned the PM had ‘repeatedly damaged’ the foundations that require MPs to declare donations inside a month of receipt.

Mr Johnson has beforehand been reprimanded for the late declaration of ten different monetary pursuits, and has been warned he faces ‘enhanced sanctions’ if he breaches the foundations once more. These embrace a potential effective or non permanent suspension from the Commons.

The most recent transfer got here 24 hours after the bombshell announcement from the Electoral Fee that it’s launching a proper investigation into the affair.

In an announcement that infuriated the PM, the watchdog mentioned: ‘We at the moment are happy that there are cheap grounds to suspect that an offence or offences might have occurred.’

The tangled financing of the PM’s flat refurbishment is already the topic of an inside assessment by the Cupboard Secretary Simon Case, and can be being investigated by the PM’s new adviser on ministerial pursuits, Lord Geidt. 

Downing Road declined to touch upon Labour’s choice to hunt an additional inquiry final evening. 

However a parliamentary supply mentioned the transfer may ‘backfire’ because it was unclear whether or not Miss Stone has the ability to research items made to Mr Johnson in his capability as a minister. 

It comes as Mr Johnson clashed bitterly with Sir Keir on Wednesday as his disaster deepened after the elections watchdog launched a proper probe into whether or not ‘offences’ have been dedicated within the Downing Road flat row.

A clearly incensed PM insisted he ‘paid for the refurbishment myself’ and had abided by the ministerial code regardless of the Electoral Fee saying there have been ‘cheap grounds to suspect’ the legislation may need been damaged over the controversial No11 refurbishment.

However as Sir Keir demanded he ‘reply the query’ he repeatedly dodged saying whether or not £58,000 of Tory funds had initially been used for the works, earlier than he repaid the cash.

‘I paid for it,’ he mentioned. ‘I’ve lined the prices.’

Attempting to deflect the assault by saying it was ‘weird’ and ‘irrelevant’ of Sir Keir to maintain pushing on the difficulty, Mr Johnson added that he has requested the brand new impartial adviser on ministerial pursuits to look into whether or not he must make ‘any additional declaration’. ‘I stay up for what the Electoral Fee has to say.’

However the Labour chief shot again: ‘The Prime Minister hasn’t answered the query, he is aware of he hasn’t answered the query, he by no means solutions the query.’

A red-faced Mr Johnson additionally flatly denied saying that he would relatively see ‘our bodies pile excessive’ than set off one other lockdown final Autumn – laying down the gauntlet to anybody who heard it to return ahead and say so publicly. ‘I did not say these phrases,’ he mentioned. ‘What I do imagine is {that a} lockdown is a depressing, depressing factor.’

Labour sources trolled the PM over his indignant exhibiting, saying it was his ‘Kevin Keegan second’ – in a reference to the then-Newcastle United supervisor’s infamous 1996 rant at Manchester United simply earlier than his workforce imploded and misplaced the championship.

In an announcement an hour earlier that heaped stress on the PM, the Electoral Fee mentioned: ‘We’ve got been involved with the Conservative Social gathering since late March and have carried out an evaluation of the knowledge they’ve offered to us.

‘We at the moment are happy that there are cheap grounds to suspect that an offence or offences might have occurred. We’ll subsequently proceed this work as a proper investigation to ascertain whether or not that is the case.

‘The investigation will decide whether or not any transactions referring to the works at 11 Downing Road fall throughout the regime regulated by the Fee and whether or not such funding was reported as required.

‘We’ll present an replace as soon as the investigation is full. We is not going to be commenting additional till that time.’

Boris Johnson (left)  flatly denied that he had instructed he would relatively ‘let our bodies pile up’ than set off one other lockdown final Autumn throughout brutal PMQs clashes with Keir Starmer (proper)

The fee appears at whether or not the Political Events, Elections and Referendums Act 2000 has been damaged, with many of the offences civil issues and punishable with fines of as much as £20,000 – though it may well refer extra severe abuse to the police. It isn’t clear what a part of the Act the watchdog believes may need been breached.

Investigators can demand paperwork, info and explanations, and will probably search a statutory interview with the Prime Minister as a part of the method.

Downing Road insisted the probe is a ‘particular matter for the Conservative Social gathering as a political occasion’ and the ‘PM hasn’t been requested for info’. However specialists imagine Mr Johnson personally may have fallen foul of the legislation.

Requested if Mr Johnson is prepared to be questioned in individual, his press secretary mentioned: ‘He and the Authorities will in fact be pleased to help if requested.’

Ministers desperately tried to shore up Mr Johnson yesterday as opposition MPs branded him a ‘serial liar’ over the £88,000 flat refurb – together with a £30,000 taxpayer contribution – and ‘our bodies piling excessive’ remark.

In one other effort to climate the instant storm, No10 confirmed that Lord Geidt has been new put in as the federal government’s new impartial adviser on ministerial pursuits. He’s launching an inquiry into the flat state of affairs.

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