Justice minister Lord Wolfson quits over Partygate scandal

The Conservative peer wrote to Boris Johnson, announcing his resignation after "repeated rule-breaking, and breaches of the criminal law" after partygate

Published

Conservative peer David Wolfson has quit as justice minister over the “scale, context and nature” of breaches of Covid regulations in Downing Street, saying in a letter to Boris Johnson it was a matter of the Prime Minister’s “own conduct” as well as the actual events.

Lord Wolfson said the “repeated rule-breaking, and breaches of the criminal law” in No 10 had caused him to submit his resignation as justice minister.

Police officers walk through Downing Street, in Westminster, London, during a protest outside the gates.
Police officers walk through Downing Street, in Westminster, London, during a protest outside the gates.

In a letter to Prime Minister Boris Johnson, the Conservative peer said: “Justice may often be a matter of courts and procedure, but the rule of law is something else – a constitutional principle which, at its root, means that everyone in a state, and indeed the state itself, is subject to the law.

Lord Wolfson
Lord Wolfson

“I regret that recent disclosures lead to the inevitable conclusion that there was repeated rule-breaking, and breaches of the criminal law, in Downing Street.

“I have – again, with considerable regret – come to the conclusion that the scale, context and nature of those breaches mean that it would be inconsistent with the rule of law for that conduct to pass with constitutional impunity, especially when many in society complied with the rules at great personal cost, and others were fined or prosecuted for similar, and sometimes apparently more trivial, offences.

“It is not just a question of what happened in Downing Street, or your own conduct. It is also, and perhaps more so, the official response to what took place.

“As we obviously do not share that view of these matters, I must ask you to accept my resignation.”