Disgraced former PM Boris Johnson sends video message of support to Nick Fletcher

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Disgraced former Prime Minister Boris Johnson has given his backing to Doncaster Conservative candidate Nick Fletcher – just one of seven Tory MPs who supported the ex-PM over rule-breaking and lockdown parties at Downing Street during the Covid pandemic.

An excited Mr Fletcher, the former Don Valley MP who is bidding for re-election in the newly created Doncaster East and Isle of Axholme constituency, eagerly announced: “Boris is on board” as he shared a clip of Mr Johnson, adding: “I can’t say it better than Boris just has!”

Standing in front of a Union flag, Mr Johnson tells viewers: “Hi folks, Boris Johnson here, I’ve got one message for you. If you want Doncaster Airport open, vote for Nick Fletcher, your Conservative candidate on July 4.”

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Mr Fletcher came in for furious criticism last year as one of only a handful of Conservatives offering his support of the damning Partygate report.

Former Prime Minister Boris Johnson has urged voters to back Nick Fletcher in Doncaster.Former Prime Minister Boris Johnson has urged voters to back Nick Fletcher in Doncaster.
Former Prime Minister Boris Johnson has urged voters to back Nick Fletcher in Doncaster.

The report found that Johnson repeatedly lied to Parliament about lockdown parties at Downing Street during the Covid pandemic.

After the backlash, an unrepentant Mr Fletcher apologised for any ‘upset’ over his decision to throw his weight behind Johnson, but doubled down on his views telling voters: “It’s not about doing what’s popular, it’s about doing what I think is right.”

He also hit out at the report’s impartiality – despite the Privileges Committee being made up of a majority of Conservatives - saying that only Tories should be able to judge Tory MPs over conduct.

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His stance drew fierce crictism both locally and nationally, with many Conservative voters withdrawing their support for Mr Fletcher.

And a furious Doncaster NHS worker launched a scathing attack on him.

In the email, the worker, wrote: “I sincerely hope that your political career is over very soon. I am a compassionate person and cannot wish any harm to anyone, but I cannot in all honesty wish you well.”

And she stormed: “In one fell swoop, you and your six deplorable colleagues have destroyed any trust that remained in your constituents that you had our best interests at heart, that you worked for us rather than your own selfish desires. We followed the rules. You did not believe in the rules.”

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After Mr Fletcher was revealed as one of the seven, he was dubbed a traitor online as well as being compared to Dopey from the Seven Dwarves as angry voters slammed him over backing Johnson.

After voters lashed Mr Fletcher over his support for Johnson, he begged for forgiveness and said: “I apologise for any upset I may have caused.”

“As an MP I vote with my conscience. I always try to do the right thing for the right reasons. It’s not about doing what’s popular, it’s about doing what I think is right.

“I voted against the recommendations from the Privilege Committee. I did so for many reasons.

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“I apologise for any upset I may have caused but it is the individual as an MP who has to live with these moral decisions that we invariably have to take and no one else.

“I ask that everyone should channel their energies into forgiveness rather than hate for mistakes made by many over these past few years.

“And maybe then we can learn from what this pandemic has taught us and try to look forward to the future rather than continually looking back.”

But his words were met with further anger and disdain from voters.

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One posted: “I can't understand how someone can vote to defend a liar.”

Another wrote: “As an MP you area there to represent the constituents. You didn't represent them - you have put the final nail in your coffin your position as MP will be gone in the next election.”

Repsonding to his plea for forgiveness, another wrote: “I don't forgive you for defending Boris Johnson.”

“Absolutely the wrong decision,” wrote another. “To vote to support a known liar in the face of massive evidence. As an MP your job is to vote in the best interests of your constituents, not some bumbling lying idiot. Let’s hope Boris can help you at the next election because you are going to need it.”

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And one Tory party member wrote: “Bye bye Nick. I am going to end my membership of your twisted, vile, corrupted, disgusting party. Enjoy your time as an MP, as it will end very soon.”

The full list of candidates for Doncaster East and Isle of Axholme is as follows

Nick Fletcher, Conservative

Paul Garrett, Green

Michael Longfellow, Climate Party

Irwen Martin, Reform UK

Lee Pitcher, Labour

Nicola Turner, Liberal Democrats

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