ステファングローバー: If Starmer is a man of honour, he wouldn't sway police

ステファングローバー: If Keir Starmer really is a man of honour, he wouldn’t be trying to sway the police over beergate

お客様 キールスターマー loves occupying the moral high ground. It was from this elevated position that he called for ボリス・ジョンソン’s resignation over 何度もボリスビルダーはスキャンダルの中でハイビズを着用しました even before the PM had been fined by the クレシダ・ディックは、会った警官に「十分だ」と警告します for being present at a birthday party in No 10.

The revelation that the Labour leader seems himself to have broken Covid laws by attending a shindig in Durham on April 30 last year has punctured his insufferable air of moral superiority.

それにもかかわらず, yesterday afternoon he attempted to regain his natural habitat by clambering back onto the high ground. He wants us to think that his promise to resign if found guilty by Durham Police of infringing Covid regulations is proof of principle. I don’t believe it is.

In his short statement, a characteristically self-righteous Sir Keir proclaimed himself to be a man of ‘honour and integrity’, and repeatedly insisted he hasn’t broken any Covid rules.

If nothing else, he showed amazing chutzpah. My opinion of his political abilities has risen. When the evidence points towards his having flouted the law, it takes a huge amount of brass neck to portray himself as an utterly virtuous and wholly innocent man.

Starmer was pictured having a bottle of beer in Durham in April last year, but insists no Covid rules were broken

Starmer was pictured having a bottle of beer in Durham in April last year, but insists no Covid rules were broken








その間, his wily deputy, アンジェラ・レイナー (who was present during the Durham beano, despite Labour’s earlier denials), followed suit by threatening to resign if she is fined. Perhaps even more preposterously, in view of her record, she also seeks to lay claim to a higher moral realm.

Most of us, were we in Sir Keir’s position, would quietly wait for the verdict of Durham Police, and take our punishment if that were the outcome. But the Labour leader has done his utmost to ensure that no fine will be issued.

His intervention was surely calculated to put pressure on the police not to penalise him. If they should be inclined to do so, they now know, since Sir Keir has spelt it out, that he will ‘step down’.

言い換えると, the Durham Constabulary has the fate of the leader of Her Majesty’s Opposition entirely in their hands. It will take a brave copper to issue a fine if it leads to the defenestration of the Labour leader, with all the political consequences that would entail.

事実上, he was saying to them: Come for me if you dare. But don’t be under any illusions that you are playing with fire. 同時に, he seemed to offer the police a get-out clause. He implied that if they judge an infraction has taken place, but decline to issue a penalty notice, he may not feel obliged to resign. Javidは非コミットでリーと会い、ある時点で彼とアイデアについて話し合うことに同意しました: Whatever transpires, don’t fine me.

要するに, he was seeking to ensure that, even if Durham Police do conclude that rules were broken after an inquiry that could take as long as eight weeks, they won’t be so rash as to deliver a formal punishment.

Remember that Sir Keir Starmer is a former Director of Public Prosecutions who knows the workings of the police intimately — far better than Boris Johnson, 例えば. Armed with this first-hand knowledge, he seeks to influence the outcome of an official investigation.

He doubtless believes that if spared a fine by Durham Police, he will be able to redouble the pressure on the Prime Minister, who has already got one penalty notice from the Metropolitan Police, and may very well receive further ones over the coming weeks.

Sir Keir’s line will be that he was prepared to step down if penalised — so Boris must pack his bags for being fined. That’s what I mean about Sir Keir loving the moral high ground, even though he is actually engaged in low politics.

It could, もちろん, all go horribly wrong for him. Durham Police might conceivably choose not to take the hint, and pursue their enquiries exactly as they would have if Sir Keir Starmer had never opened his mouth.








Starmer and Labour deputy leader Angela Rayner, who has also said she will quit if fined over Beergate

Starmer and Labour deputy leader Angela Rayner, who has also said she will quit if fined over Beergate

If poor Rishi Sunak can be fined £60 for arriving early for a meeting in No 10, where an impromptu birthday party for Boris Johnson was taking place, Sir Keir’s participation at an event attended by as many as 40 people — where curry was eaten and beer drunk — could be judged a serious infringement of Covid rules even by Durham coppers.

As for putting pressure on Mr Johnson, the Prime Minister doesn’t register shame easily. Even if the Labour leader escapes a fine, he could emerge from this imbroglio with his reputation damaged, and still be unable to dislodge Boris.

So Sir Keir is playing a dangerous game with his own political career. His calculation is that, without an intervention, he was probably heading for a fine. He hopes he now won’t be. We’ll see.

Whatever happens, the true danger, I suggest, is to our constitutional arrangements. If Sir Keir Starmer really were the man of honour and integrity he claims to be, he would have kept quiet, and not sought to influence Durham Police.