Will Partygate be the end of Boris Johnson? | Behind The Headlines
Independent

A Scottish Conservative MSP has snubbed Boris Johnson by saying he "was too busy painting" his bathroom to meet the prime minister on his trip to Scotland.

After Russell Findlay failed to meet the prime minister while he whipped around Fife on Monday, as part of a tour around the UK promoting his levelling-up agenda, he said to Times Radio: "I was too busy painting my bathroom" and how's that for an excuse?

It comes amid tensions between Johnson and the Scottish Tories.

Scottish Conservative leader Douglas Ross once supported the PM but has now repeatedly called for his resignation over the Partygate scandal and also declined to meet Johnson during the trip, opting to hang out in Perth instead.

Findlay added that because Johnson had been touring the in a government capacity it wouldn't have been proper for him to schedule meetings with party members.

He also said that Johnson should travel to all parts of the UK and criticised people who portrayed the prime minister as “an outsider, an alien entity”.

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And when it was suggested by the Times Radio presenter Matt Chorley that Johnson’s visits tend to coincide with an increase in support for independence, Findlay replied: “Well, I couldn’t possibly comment.”

Findlay added: “Many people I speak to like Boris Johnson on the doorstep but it’s true to say that he is largely not popular, certainly a divisive figure in Scotland. But I don’t think materially he is going to suddenly turn the majority of Scots into wanting to break up the United Kingdom.

"Think back to seven years ago, when Alex Salmond was the man we were told to lead Scotland to freedom. And now, according to the SNP, he’s a conspiracy theorist. So the United Kingdom is much bigger than an individual. Whether it is Boris Johnson or Alex Salmond.”

How diplomatic. As for the painting, how can Johnson blame him? After all, he is also a fan of painting. Buses, apparently...

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