Derbyshire’s top Tory comes under fire for PM and chancellor tweet

Derbyshire’s top Tory has come under criticism for claiming the prime minister and chancellor should ‘continue their leadership’, amid lingering anger over lockdown breaches.

By Christina Massey
Thursday, 14th April 2022, 4:22 pm

Conservative Derbyshire County Council Leader Barry Lewis commented on Twitter following the news that Boris Johnson and Rishi Sunak had been issued fixed penalty notices after breaking Covid lockdown rules in June 2020.

Tweeting from his @CllrBarryLewis account, he said: “It’s right the PM apologise for his actions & right that both he and the Chancellor were issued fixed penalty notices.

“However, they should continue their leadership during a time of Covid recovery, economic challenge & gathering clouds over Europe.”

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Conservative Derbyshire County Council Leader Barry Lewis commented on Twitter following the news that Boris Johnson and Rishi Sunak had been issued fixed penalty notices after breaking Covid lockdown rules in June 2020.

However with many still calling for the senior Tory party members to stand down, Councillor Lewis received numerous responses to the contrary, including former Peak District National Park Authority boss Jim Dixon, who commented: “I say this as a supporter of you and your party locally but the degree and seriousness of this lawbreaking has damaged the public’s trust in both of these two politicians.

“That is not the fault of the public, opposition or left-wing commentators.

“This is down to Sunak & Johnson.”

Fellow Conservative Derbyshire county councillor Nigel Gourlay said: “While Boris was partying, my step-father was dying with Covid in Stepping Hill.”

He added: “They let my mum see him 20 minutes before he died.”

Another commenter claimed the Derbyshire County Council leader had ‘lost credibility with this stance’, while another said having been a Conservative supporter for more than 70 years he believed the prime minister and chancellor had lost the party the next general election.

Defending his comment, Coun Lewis later added: “To be clear: I don’t condone their actions, hence the £50 tickets & apologies being the right thing.

“Many lost people: for us it was our mum at the very start & as a family we endured the most awful funeral you can imagine in the 1st lockdown.

“My point is this isn’t the time.”

Both Boris Johnson and Rishi Sunak have rejected the calls to resign.

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