Scarborough and Whitby MP Robert Goodwill joins calls for Dominic Cummings to be sacked

Scarborough's MP has joined calls for Dominic Cummings to be sacked.

By Sarah Fitton
Tuesday, 26th May 2020, 2:27 pm

Robert Goodwill says he has had 500 emails over the past few days - with 98 per cent of them slamming the actions of the Prime Minister's chief aid who is at the centre of a lockdown controversy.

In his replies to those messages, he has been saying: "As MPs and people in the public eye I feel it is important that we set an example to others by fully complying with the rules we expect others to obey.

"If press reports are correct, Dominic Cummings has fallen short of the standards we expect of every individual, never mind a person who should be setting an example.

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Left: Robert Goodwill MP Picture: JPI Media/ Richard Ponter. Right: Dominic Cummings Picture: Getty Images

"If he was unsure what the rules were then he could have got advice from medical experts and those in charge of the programme at the very highest level. At the very least he could have made it publicly clear what he intended to do ahead of travelling north.

"I agree with you that his position is untenable and he should be relieved of his post."

In contrast, MP for Thirsk and Malton, Kevin Hollinrake, has defended Mr Cummings’ actions, agreeing with a post on Twitter by Michael Gove which said: "Caring for your wife and child is not a crime."

He told the Scarborough News: “A lot of people have been in touch and a lot of people are understandably very concerned.”

He said even after Mr Cummings made a statement and answered questions yesterday, some have still not been satisfied by his answers.

Mr Hollinrake said there could not be “one rule for one and one rule for another” but if a constituent had been in touch with the same intentions as Mr Cummings, he would have thought those actions were acceptable.

“It’s borderline but in my view it was a reasonable thing to do," he said.

“Just because the press want to write about this doesn’t mean he is guilty of wrong-doing.

“Just because the media want to continue writing and broadcasting this doesn’t mean he has to resign.”

He said if the matter continues to cause concern, he would have no objection to Mr Cummings facing an independent review of his actions.

Mr Cummings travelled to County Durham in March to self-isolate with his family – apparently because he feared that he and his wife would be left unable to care for their son – while official guidelines warned against long-distance journeys.

Several Conservative backbenchers have joined calls from opposition parties for Mr Cummings to quit or be sacked, amid warnings that his actions have “undermined” efforts to fight coronavirus.

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