Shadow education secretary tells GB News Conservatives are 'wasting police time' in 'desperate' attempt to drag Labour down by seeking Sir Keir Starmer beer probe

Bridget Phillipson said Richard Holden was wrong to ask officers to re-examine the case and insisted no rules were broken.

Published Last updated

The Conservative MP pushing for an investigation into Sir Keir Starmer drinking a beer with colleagues during Covid restrictions has been accused of wasting police time by a Labour frontbencher.

Shadow education secretary Bridget Phillipson said Richard Holden was wrong to ask officers to re-examine the gathering, as she insisted no rules were broken.

The Labour leader has said there is "no comparison” between the gathering in the Durham constituency office of local MP Mary Foy last year and the rule-breaking in Downing Street that has seen Boris Johnson fined by police.

Mr Holden, who represents North West Durham, has asked Durham Police to reconsider its assessment that no offence was committed during the meeting on April 30 last year.

Joining Anne Diamond and Stephen Dixon on Breakfast with Stephen and Anne, Phillipson said: "I think there is no comparison between the two."
Joining Anne Diamond and Stephen Dixon on Breakfast with Stephen and Anne, Phillipson said: "I think there is no comparison between the two."

Joining Anne Diamond and Stephen Dixon on Breakfast with Stephen and Anne, Phillipson said: "I think there is no comparison between the two.

"The police have looked into the matter, there’s no case to answer, no rules were broken.

"I can see why Tory MPs ahead of the local elections want to spend their time seeking to drag us all into the gutter and make out that we’re all the same.

"But really, you look at the number of fines that have been issued at Downing Street. The fact that the Prime Minister lied to the British people, that he’s lied to Parliament, we’ve got the only Prime Minister in modern times that’s broken the law and still in office.

"I understand why they’re getting so desperate around this.

Labour Leader Sir Keir Starmer and Deputy Leader Angela Rayner at the launch of of Labour's 2022 local election campaign at The Brown Cow, Burrs Country Park, Bury, Greater Manchester. Picture date: Thursday March 31, 2022.
Labour Leader Sir Keir Starmer and Deputy Leader Angela Rayner at the launch of of Labour's 2022 local election campaign at The Brown Cow, Burrs Country Park, Bury, Greater Manchester. Picture date: Thursday March 31, 2022.

"Keir Starmer and Angela Rayner did nothing wrong and broke no rules, Tory MPs should know better than to waste police time on this."

Questioned by Stephen Dixon about the Labour Party "categorically denying" that Angela Rayner was at the same meeting, Phillipson responded: “there was an honest mistake made if Angela had been asked directly she would have confirmed it, there was no attempt on her part to hide that.

"There really is no comparison between the two, this is desperate stuff from the Tories."