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Sue Gray Report: A Matter of Days and Hours?

Prime Minister: Boris Johnson.

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The Sue Gray Report will be released to 10 Downing Street within a matter of hours or days. What contents it will contain and when the report will be in the public domain, remains to be seen.

Cressida Dick, the Officer in charge of the Metropolitan Police, is overseeing a separate investigation, (besides the Sue Gray report), into whether Downing Street or Whitehall broke COVID rules. Reports have come out that illegal gatherings were held at 10 Downing Street when the government was telling us not to mix with others. If the police investigation and report find that there were breaches of the COVID rules, then those that did, including Bojo, will be or should be fined. As former Prime Minister, Theresa May mused, "no one is above the law" and so it should be no matter one's rank in life. If people like Boris Johnson or even Prince Andrew are not under the law, like the rest of us, then the law is not fit for purpose.

Many feel the Met Police findings may clash with the Sue Gray report. Hence, many feel that the police report may be impacting the release of the Sue Gray report. In other words, some have suggested, that the police have intentionally or unintentionally, delayed the release of the Sue Gray report, just in case inconsistencies arise both in the Met Police investigation and the Sue Gray one. Commander Roper speaking for the Met said this was not the case. Certainly, the Met had asked for information from the Cabinet Office, but the police report will in no way impact the Sue Gray report, (either when it is released or a difference in the findings). Commander Roper has said the Met is investigating a number of breaches which took place, over 2020-21. Whether these breaches, were to do with the government, she never elaborated.

Sir Keir Starmer has accused the government of being in a state of paralysis over the imminent release of the Sue Gray report and the police investigation. Jacob Rees-Mogg has said in an interview that if Boris is forced out of office by 'Partygate', then there should be a general election. A general election usually follows the internal election of a new party leader and Prime Minister. For example, Theresa May called a general election to cement her election within the Conservative party as leader and Prime Minister. If she could get a public mandate, then both her party and the public would be behind her. However, what happened in reality was that the general election left her clinging to power. Jeremy Corbyn's Labour party did not win that election, but it left May hanging onto power by a thread. Others like John Major or Gordon Brown, did not call a general election, when they replaced Thatcher/Blair, they waited. Certainly, if a general election were called now, the antics of this administration have put many voters offf the Tories. It seems according to these polls, Labour would win and Sir Keir, would be walking into 10 Downing Street.

When the Sue Gray report is in the public domain, it is thought, certain parts of it may be redacted. Either to equate with the findings of the Met Police investigation or because some of the report may not be for the eyes of the public. Sir Keir Starmer has said the Sue Gray report should be published in full. No doubt, as an ex-barrister, Sir Keir's legal mind, will want to study the findings of the report in fine detail.

From Johnson's perspective no doubt, if both the police and Sue Gray report are true and not a stitchup, constant reminders, must be irritating. However, if there is a case to answer, even though Bojo apologised at Prime Minister's Questions, then Boris and others should face action, (whether he remains as Prime Minister or not), just like anyone else. However, if we are all honest, all of us may have broken COVID rules, whether we realiise it or not. The difference between us and the government is, they told us to obey the rules, while many of them apparently did not.

In the coming days, weeks and months, the fallout from the Sue Gray report and the Met Police will reveal itself.

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