At least one Conservative MP has publicly called for Matt Hancock to resign today, as pressure mounts on the Health Secretary. Duncan Baker, the MP for North Norfolk, told the Eastern Daily Press that people in public office with positions of responsibility “should act with the appropriate moral and ethics that come with that role”. The Independent has more.
Mr Baker told the newspaper the health secretary should resign and said he had made his views known to Boris Johnson’s administration.
It comes after the prime minister attempted to save his beleaguered cabinet minister — declaring the matter “closed” on Friday — but questions have continued to mount over Mr Hancock’s conduct in office, after he was filmed embracing in his Whitehall office with a longtime friend he placed on the government payroll.
The Daily Telegraph also reported Conservative MPs were telling the prime minister to “pull the plug” on the health secretary, but, until now, have resisted from making their views publicly known.
Speaking on GB News on Saturday, Esther McVey, a former Tory cabinet minister also added to the intensifying pressure on Mr Hancock, saying: “If it had been me, I would have resigned myself.”
She added: “I’m hoping that Matt Hancock is thinking the same thing that he doesn’t have to have it pushed upon him it will be viewed far more admirably if he comes forward reassessing it and that’s what I’d like to see.”
I said the same thing on Twitter last night, arguing that he should resign for self-interested reasons.
Bill Clinton’s aides had a ’10-day rule’, meaning that if a politician manages to cling on for 10 days after a scandal breaks he can then survive because the media will inevitably get bored of the story and move on to something else. Alastair Campbell amended this to 11 days on the grounds that British journalists had a slightly longer attention span than their American counterparts. Eleven days from the Hancock story breaking in the Sun would be Monday July 5th. If I was a betting man – and I am – I’d say he’ll be gone by then.