Boris Johnson wanted meet the Queen face-to-face at the start of pandemic, Dominic Cummings reveals 


Boris Johnson wanted to meet the Queen at the start of the pandemic despite signs Covid was spreading in Downing Street, it was claimed last night.

In a fresh assault on his ex-boss, Dominic Cummings said he had to persuade the PM not to have his weekly audience with the monarch in case he gave her the fatal virus.

In an hour-long interview with the BBC’s political editor Laura Kuenssberg, he said: ‘I said ‘what are you doing?’ and he said ‘I’m going to see the Queen,’ and I said, ‘what on earth are you talking about, of course you can’t go and see the Queen’.

‘[The PM] said, ‘ah, that’s what I do every Wednesday, sod this, I’m gonna go and see her’.’

The former chief adviser alleged he warned the PM that there were already people in No 10 who were isolating and told him: ‘You might have coronavirus.’

Boris Johnson wanted to meet the Queen at the start of the pandemic despite signs Covid was spreading in Downing Street, it was claimed last night (pictured: Dominic Cummings in an interview with Laura Kuenssberg) 

In a fresh assault on his ex-boss, Dominic Cummings said he had to persuade the PM (pictured right) not to have his weekly audience with the monarch in case he gave her the fatal virus

In a fresh assault on his ex-boss, Dominic Cummings said he had to persuade the PM (pictured right) not to have his weekly audience with the monarch in case he gave her the fatal virus

He added: ‘I just said, ‘if you… give her coronavirus and she dies what are you gonna do, you can’t do that, you can’t risk that, that’s completely insane’.

‘And he said, he basically just hadn’t thought it through, he said, ‘yeah, ‘holy s***, I can’t go’.’

Mr Cummings also claimed the PM was reluctant to tighten restrictions last autumn because ‘the people who are dying are essentially all over 80’. WhatsApp messages suggested the PM was sceptical of the need for a new national lockdown – as ‘hardly anyone under 60 goes into hospital’.

In a message to aides on October 15, Mr Johnson said he no longer bought into ‘all this NHS overwhelmed stuff’ – although just two weeks later he announced a four-week national lockdown.

‘I must say I have been slightly rocked by some of the data on Covid fatalities. The median age is 82 – 81 for men 85 for women,’ the message read. That is above life expectancy. So get Covid and live longer. Hardly anyone under 60 goes into hospital (4 per cent) and of those virtually all survive.

Cummings claimed he told Boris Johnson that 'of course he couldn't go and see the Queen' at the start of the pandemic (file photo)

Cummings claimed he told Boris Johnson that ‘of course he couldn’t go and see the Queen’ at the start of the pandemic (file photo)

The former chief adviser alleged he warned the PM that there were already people in No 10 who were isolating and told him: ¿You might have coronavirus'

The former chief adviser alleged he warned the PM that there were already people in No 10 who were isolating and told him: ‘You might have coronavirus’

‘And I no longer buy all this NHS overwhelmed stuff. Folks I think we may need to recalibrate. There are max 3m [million] in this country aged over 80. It shows we don’t go for nationwide lockdown.’

In his first TV interview since leaving No 10, Mr Cummings claimed the PM ‘put his own political interests ahead of people’s lives for sure’.

He said Mr Johnson’s attitude last autumn was a ‘weird mix’ of ‘partly ‘it’s all nonsense and lockdowns don’t work anyway’ and partly ‘well this is terrible but the people who are dying are essentially all over 80 and we can’t kill the economy just because of people dying over 80′.’ He added: ‘Lots of people heard the Prime Minister say that, the Prime Minister texted that to me and other people.’

Mr Cummings also claimed that Mr Johnson repeatedly said ‘we should never have done the first lockdown’.

Mr Cummings also claimed the PM was reluctant to tighten restrictions last autumn because ¿the people who are dying are essentially all over 80¿

Mr Cummings also claimed the PM was reluctant to tighten restrictions last autumn because ‘the people who are dying are essentially all over 80’

In his first TV interview since leaving No 10, Mr Cummings claimed the PM ¿put his own political interests ahead of people¿s lives for sure¿

In his first TV interview since leaving No 10, Mr Cummings claimed the PM ‘put his own political interests ahead of people’s lives for sure’

WHAT THE PM POSTED TO HIS STAFF

I must say I have been slightly rocked by some of the data on Covid fatalities. The median age is 82 – 81 for men, 85 for women. That is above life expectancy. So get Covid and live longer. Hardly anyone under 60 goes into hospital (4 per cent) and of those virtually all survive.

And I no longer buy all this NHS overwhelmed stuff. Folks I think we may need to recalibrate. There are max 3m in this country aged over 80. It shows we don’t go for nationwide lockdown. 

He said: ‘After the first wave passed and after he came back to work, initially his view was essentially, ‘thank goodness we did do that’, but very quickly, as the Telegraph and various parts of the media and Tory Party started screaming, he then basically reverted and said ‘actually the whole thing was a disaster, we should never have done it, I was right in February, we should basically just ignore it and just let the thing wash through the country and not destroy the economy and move on’.’

Mr Cummings left Downing Street in November following a power struggle and has since been highly critical of the Government’s handling of the pandemic. Last night Downing Street denied that the incident where the PM and Mr Cummings discussed visiting the Queen took place.

Buckingham Palace declined to comment.

A Downing Street spokesman told the BBC: ‘Since the start of the pandemic, the Prime Minister has taken the necessary action to protect lives and livelihoods, guided by the best scientific advice. ‘The Government he leads has delivered the fastest vaccination rollout in Europe, saved millions of jobs through the furlough scheme and prevented the NHS from being overwhelmed through three national lockdowns.

‘The Government is entirely focused on emerging cautiously from the pandemic and building back better.’

The interview will be shown on BBC2 tonight at 7pm.

Mr Cummings left Downing Street in November following a power struggle and has since been highly critical of the Government¿s handling of the pandemic

Mr Cummings left Downing Street in November following a power struggle and has since been highly critical of the Government’s handling of the pandemic

Last night Downing Street denied that the incident where the PM and Mr Cummings discussed visiting the Queen took place

Last night Downing Street denied that the incident where the PM and Mr Cummings discussed visiting the Queen took place

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