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Pressure from Tory MPs on Boris Johnson to sack Dominic Cummings grows

MORE pressure was piled on PM Boris Johnson by Tory MPs today to sack senior adviser Dominic Cummings over his road trip during the coronavirus lockdown.

On Tuesday, 30 Conservative MPs called on their leader to fire him, and minister Douglas Ross resigned from the government over the issue.

At a news conference on Monday, Mr Cummings defended his 260-mile drive from London to Durham in March, after the nation had been told not to travel.

He claimed he made the trip to his father’s farm in case he needed his sister or nieces to look after his son.

The four-year-old was later admitted to hospital, accompanied in the ambulance by his mother, Mr Cummings claimed. 

He did not apologise and said that he did not regret his actions.

Mr Cummings also said that on April 12 he and his wife drove from Durham to the outskirts of the town of Barnard Castle to “test his eyesight” before they returned to London.

Today, as Mr Johnson was being grilled by MPs on the liaison committee over his handling of the Covid-19 crisis, more Tory and Labour MPs said that Mr Cummings’ position was untenable.

While Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick told the BBC’s Today programme that the public and politicians need to “move on” from the road-trip controversy, fellow Tory MPs such as David Simmonds maintained that Mr Cummings should stand down.

Former Tory MP Dr Sarah Wollaston, who previously chaired the liaison committee, said she would urge Mr Johnson “unequivocally” to sack Mr Cummings.

Conservative MP Sir Bob Neill said that Mr Cummings should have accepted he was wrong and apologised.

Tory MP Giles Watling said he was “deeply unhappy” about Mr Cummings’s movements during lockdown and would issue a statement after the liaison committee had heard evidence on the issue.

Mr Johnson has maintained his position that Mr Cummings “acted legally and with integrity” despite the Tory backlash and opinion polls suggesting the public disagree.

Shadow foreign & commonwealth affairs secretary Lisa Nandy said that Mr Johnson must “take responsibility” over the scandal and “take action to restore public confidence.”

Members of the public being queried by police officers over their movements are telling them that “If it’s OK for Cummings, it’s OK for us,” a Labour police & crime commissioner has claimed.

West Midlands commissioner David Jamieson said he had received internal “intelligence reports” that officers are now getting “push-back” from people over Mr Cummings’s actions.

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