Boris Johnson still has “plenty more fuel in the tank” and should not resign over partygate, according to Conservative party chair Oliver Dowden.
Dowden said that “I do think what happened in Downing Street was wrong”, after the Prime Minister was handed a police fine for breaching Covid rules, but that he does not believe Johnson misled parliament over the saga.
It comes as a trickle of Tory MPs turn against Johnson and have called for the Prime Minister to resign as they brace for the Metropolitan Police to rule on other cases of potential Covid rule-breaking.
An investigation will also soon be launched into whether Johnson misled parliament over partygate by Westminster’s Committee of Privileges.
“I do think that what happened in Downing Street was wrong. I do think people feel a great deal of legitimate hurt and anger at what happened and it was right and legitimate for the Prime Minister to come to parliament and apologise on the day,” Dowden told Sky News.
When asked if Johnson will take the Tories into the next election, Dowden said: “He’s got plenty more fuel in the tank. He’s got real energy and determination to continue to serve this country and deal with some of the big challenges we face, whether that’s levelling up or recovering from this global energy crisis and security crisis.
“The uncertainty that would be caused by a change of leader would be really damaging to this country.”