‘Carrie was going completely crackers’: Cummings takes a swipe at Boris’s fiancee for distracting the PM on ‘crazy day’ at start of pandemic – over a press story about their DOG Dilyn
Dominic Cummings lashed out at Boris Johnson’s fiancee Carrie Symonds today claiming she distracted the Prime Minister on a key day early in the pandemic by going ‘completely crackers’ over their dog Dilyn.
In his bombshell evidence to MPs today the PM’s former chief aide said that he told the PM on March 12 that there were ‘big problems coming’ and that hundreds of thousands of people might die from Covid.
In a message to the PM early in the morning of that day – almost a fortnight before the first lockdown was finally introduced, he warned that people should be told that day to stay at home if they had symptoms.
But facing a committee of senior MPs today Mr Cummings claimed the PM was distracted that day by his partner, who was furious about media reports that claimed the couple were considering getting rid of their dog, Dilyn.
Carrie Symonds posted this picture to announce her engagement to the PM in February 2020
‘The Prime Minister’s girlfriend was going completely crackers about this story and demanding the press office deal with that,’ he said.
Ms Symonds was so incensed by the story in the Times at the time that she took to Twitter to claim it was ‘total c**p’.
The comments are the latest and most public stage of a major ongoing row between Mr Cummings and Ms Symonds, which is believed to have been the reason for his firing in late 2020.
She is believed to have been behind his defenestration last winter, which saw the former Vote Leave mastermind sensationally ditched. His allies were alleged to have referred to Ms Symonds, a former Conservative Party director of communications as ‘Princess Nut Nuts’.
Dominic Cummings speaks at a committee hearing in Portcullis House in London today
Mr Cummings said that in retrospect it was a ‘huge failure’ on his part not to ‘hit the emergency panic button’ earlier.
He said it was’ obvious’ in retrospect that the UK should have locked down in the first week of March at the latest.
Giving evidence to the Commons Health and Social Care and Science and Technology Committees, he said: ‘In retrospect it is clear that the official plan was wrong, it is clear that the whole advice was wrong, and I think it is clear that we obviously should have locked down essentially the first week of March at the latest.
‘We certainly should have been doing all of these things weeks before we did, I think it’s unarguable that that is the case.’
Mr Johnson runs through a park in London with Dilyn the dog yesterday
Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Carrie Symonds at Westminster Abbey in March 2020
He added: ‘There’s no doubt in retrospect that yes, it was a huge failure of mine and I bitterly regret that I didn’t hit the emergency panic button earlier then I did.
‘In retrospect there’s no doubt I was wrong not to.
‘All I can say is my worry was, my mental state at the time was, on the one hand you can know from the last week of February that a whole many things were wrong.
‘But I was incredibly frightened, I guess is the word, about the consequences of me kind of pulling a massive emergency string and saying the official plan is wrong and it’s going to kill everyone and you have got to change path because what if I’m wrong?
‘What if I persuade him to change tack and that’s a disaster?’