Dawn Butler received support from Conservative MPs after calling out Boris Johnson for “lying”, she claims

Dawn Butler received support from Conservative MPs after calling out Boris Johnson for “lying”, she claims

Dawn Butler has received messages of support from Conservative MPs who agree with her assessment that Boris Johnson is “a liar”, she has claimed.

Speaking to indy100, the Labour MP, who hit the headlines after being asked to leave the Commons, said she had been endorsed by people on “all sides of the house” who were concerned about Johnson’s behaviour, and confirmed that this included Conservative Party MPs. She declined to give specific names of those who had contacted her.

“They are concerned about the authoritarian powers that this government has and the direction of travel of our freedoms and our rights,” she said.

Butler was asked by temporary deputy speaker Judith Cummins to leave the House of Commons for the remainder of the day on Thursday after she accused Johnson of “lying” to the public.

She was asked to leave because it is considered not within the boundaries of parliamentary etiquette to call another member a liar.

Butler had said: “Poor people in our country have paid with their lives because the Prime Minister has spent the last 18 months misleading this House and the country over and over again.”

She highlighted disputed claims made by the Prime Minister, including figures about the economy and the government’s record on coronavirus, adding: “It’s dangerous to lie in a pandemic.”

“I am disappointed the Prime Minister has not come to the House to correct the record and correct the fact that he has lied to this House and the country over and over again,” she added.

“At the end of the day the Prime Minister has lied to this House time and time again.

“It’s funny that we get in trouble in this place for calling out the lie rather than the person lying.”

Cummins intervened twice and urged Butler to “reflect” on her words and withdraw them.

Butler replied: “I’ve reflected on my words and somebody needs to tell the truth in this House that the Prime Minister has lied.”

Now, speaking to indy100, Butler said she believed it was right for her to have made a stand, despite knowing she would be asked to leave for doing so.

She said: “It’s really important for everybody who has been following the rules, for all the families who have lost loved ones, that we call out the fact that our Prime Minister has consistently lied to the country and to parliament.

“I know what the rules are – I knew that if I called the Prime Minister a liar then it is considered unparliamentary language and I would be thrown out of Parliament.”

But she restated that she believed it to be wrong to be punished more for “calling out” the act of lying as opposed to the “lying” and said that Parliament should re-examine its rules to “suit the modern era.”

“This is eroding democracy and the right to hold the Prime Minister and his ministers to account”, she said.

“We have to be very careful that we don’t blindly walk into an authoritarian state where there’s just a few elite people at the very top making all the decisions and the rest of us our just bystanders”.

She added she believes Johnson lies to “make his party look good” and pointed to the NHS track and trace app and government investment in the NHS as two examples the PM “lies” about.

She also said she didn’t plan for the action to go viral but that it had made her “hopeful” that people would “look into all of [Johnson’s] lies”. “I’m just pleased that people are… doing their research and coming to the conclusions that Boris Johnson is indeed a liar.”

Butler also said she would continue raising the issue when Parliament returns after the summer recess.

“I am going to be putting forward a petition to Parliament to strengthen the rules of Parliament so that… the rules either apply to all of us or none of us and when Ministers break the ministerial code… they will apologise,” she said.

Pressed on how leader of the Labour Party Keir Starmer had reacted to the incident, she said they had not discussed it but expects that they will “at some stage”.

“I probably will have a discussion with Keir about this at some stage,” she said.

She added: “Keir Starmer is fully aware that Boris Johnson lies because he lies to him every Wednesday [at PMQs] so he also has a dossier on Boris Johnson’s lies. It will come as no surprise.”

Indy100 has contacted Downing Street for comment.

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