Dominic Cummings, Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s chief advisor, is in hot water because he traveled 250 miles to his parents’ home with his family when his wife showed symptoms of COVID-19. Cummings says he wanted to be near relatives and wanted reliable childcare if he tested positive.
Under normal circumstances, that would be completely understandable. But travel in Great Britain is extremely restricted because of the pandemic and Johnson’s political opponents saw an opportunity to attack.
Mr Cummings told reporters he “behaved reasonably and legally” when asked about the trip from London to Durham.
Asked whether it looked good, he said: “Who cares about good looks? It’s a question of doing the right thing. It’s not about what you guys think.”
He was later asked by reporters whether he would consider his position, he said: “Obviously not.”
“You guys are probably all about as right about that as you were about Brexit: do you remember how right you all were about that,” he added.
The question isn’t legality as much as it is political propriety. But Cummings isn’t worried — yet — because his boss has his back.
Transport secretary, Grant Shapps, revealed during the daily coronavirus press conference at Downing Street the PM backed Cummings.
He said: “The prime minister would have known he was staying put, and he didn’t come out again until he was feeling better … the prime minister provides Mr Cummings with his full support”.
A Downing Street spokesman added: “His sister shopped for the family and left everything outside. At no stage was he or his family spoken to by the police about this matter, as is being reported.”
Is it really that big of a deal? Cummings’s desire to make sure his kids would be OK if he got sick would qualify as an “emergency” for most people. But Cummings did not serve his boss well during the row over his family visit, not in the visit itself.
Downing Street should have been better prepared to answer questions about Cummings but misjudged the mood of the nation. People are in genuine anguish over missing funerals, weddings, babies being born — all the little things that make life worth living.
Social media blew up.
I’m fuming. All those men who missed their babies being born, all those elderly mums and dads dying alone while their kids cried at home, all those unattended funerals. All on the instruction of a government now defending a mate who chose to take his suspected Covid on a roadtrip
— Sali Hughes (@salihughes) May 23, 2020
My baby was born in Oct at 26 wks gestation. She was in NICU in 3 diff hospitals for 96 days. After this she was in isolation for 2 months, then she received a shielding letter. We have barely seen another human in 7 months yet Dominic Cummings visited his parents? I despair
— Mrs R 🤖 (@livsrodrigues) May 22, 2020
So none of our parents have been allowed to come and help us out in the last few weeks of my pregnancy and might not be able to see the new baby (if they ever arrive) but so glad that Dominic Cummings was able to prance around his parents' garden to Dancing Queen with coronavirus
— Marianne MacRae (@MarianneMacRae) May 23, 2020
A 13 year old boy died without his family… millions of parents..including single parents! have been struggling for weeks… people have died alone..we’ve done as we were asked, for everyone! Cummings is a national disgrace!! #CummingsMustGo
— Jackie Frances ‘filthy cultist’ (@pompeyblonde1) May 23, 2020
Cummings shouldn’t be sacked, but a little more humility, as well as a public apology, might tamp down the anger a bit.
Editor’s Note: Want to support PJ Media so we can keep telling the truth about China and the virus they unleashed on the world? Join PJ Media VIP and use the promo code WUHAN to get 25% off your VIP membership.