Nadine Dorries claims Boris Johnson 'has the confidence of the country'
Nadine Dorries, in all her wisdom, has shown her support for Boris Johnson by slamming Jeremy Hunt before appearing to inadvertently trounce the Tory government's pre-pandemic readiness.
Responding to Hunt's revelation that he will be voting against the PM in tonight's no confidence vote, which has fuelled rumours he will stand as Tory leader if Johnson is ousted, the culture secretary unleashed a bruising attack on the former health secretary, claiming his handling of the pandemic "would have been a disaster" and that his pandemic preparation while health secretary was "wanting and inadequate".
Dorries served as a minister in the health department from 2019 to 2021 under the illustrious Matt Hancock while Hunt held the keys to the department in 2018 so they didn't overlap but clearly she doesn't think much of how he left the department.
Because when Hunt said the Tory was "set to lose the next general election" because of Johnson and that he would be "voting for change"...
\u201cAnyone who believes our country is stronger, fairer & more prosperous when led by Conservatives should reflect that the consequence of not changing will be to hand the country to others who do not share those values. Today\u2019s decision is change or lose. I will be voting for change\u201d
Dorries wasn't happy with his remarks and let rip:
\u201c4/4You told others that PM and Gov would swiftly collapse on back of Brexit and you would swoop in. You told me as much in Victoria St after GE. If you had been leader you\u2019d have handed the keys of No10 to Corbyn. You\u2019ve been wrong about almost everything, you are wrong again now\u201d
This is all very well and might make Johnson happy but people pointed out she really wasn't doing her party any favours:
\u201c@NadineDorries You may see this as some clever attack at a possible successor to loverboy, but all the public see is you saying \u201cthe Tories did not prepare for a pandemic which killed over a hundred and seventy thousand people\u201d which is true\u201d
\u201cDorries is low-hanging fruit, I know, but tweet 3 is an incredible bit of self-incrimination\u201d
— Tories That Are Helping (@Tories That Are Helping)
\u201cLabour are going to town on this - a Cabinet minister saying the Tories' pandemic preparedness was "inadequate" for six years before Covid. (Context is Boris Johnson loyalist Nadine Dorries blasting Jeremy Hunt)\u201d
Indeed, Labour's deputy leader Angela Rayner wasted no time in seizing the political opportunity:
\u201cThe absolute state of this.\n\nA Cabinet Minister now admitting the Conservative Government failed to prepare our country for a pandemic in which 180,000 people in the UK died.\n\nThey failed to keep us safe. \n\nYou just can\u2019t trust them.\u201d