Keir Starmer’s offer to resign if he is fined for breaking COVID rules was arrived at by “instinct”, the Labour leader has said.
Speaking to ITV’s Loose Women, Sir Keir said he knew when Durham Police announced it would be investigating the event in Durham last year – where he was pictured drinking beer with party staffers – that the offer to quit was the “right thing” to do.
“I haven’t broken the rules, and I’m sure that’s going to be the finding of the police,” he said.
“My instinct, as soon as I knew that Durham had decided they were going to reopen its investigation, in my heart I knew what I was going to say, which is: If I’m wrong and they’ve found I have broken the law then I’ll do the right thing and step down.”
“I hope that isn’t going to happen, I don’t think it is going to happen.
“But I’m trying to make the bigger point here because there are allegations about who did what when.
“But there is a bigger picture, which is trust in politics.”
The Labour leader was also asked whether it was hypocritical that he called for Boris Johnson’s resignation when the Met Police launched its investigation – before any decision had been taken on fines.
“By then we already knew that there was industrial scale rule breaking in Downing Street,” he told Loose Women.
“We had had so many examples, including the example of the wheelbarrow of booze coming in, the suitcases coming in, on the eve of Prince Philip’s funeral, so it was a completely different situation.”