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BBC presenter Simon McCoy hit out at Robert Courts MP for defending Dominic Cummings’ breach of lockdown as the senior adviser drove more than 260 miles to Durham from London. Boris Johnson’s right-hand man explained he had to seek childcare for his son. Conservative MPs have been coming out in support for Mr Cummings.
Witney constituents have been writing to Mr Courts to voice their fury but when asked about it, he wasn’t able to say how many constituents support the break of the lockdown.
Speaking to BBC News, Mr Courts said: “These are very difficult times and I totally respect the difficult decisions that everybody has had to take.
“But I do think we ought to look at these matters with some compassion and with some understanding.
“Clearly what Mr Cummings was trying to do was to do what was best for his family and for his four-year-old son.
“He was in a very, very difficult position.”
Mr McCoy interjected: “Yes, he was doing what was best for him and his family, not what was best for the country as the country was in lockdown.
“How many letters have you had from constituents backing Dominic Cummings?”
Mr Courts continued: “I can’t give you figures. I haven’t gone through and counted them all.”
Scottish Conservative leader Jackson Carlaw has said Mr Cummings should “consider his position” following his trip to County Durham during the lockdown.
The Tories’ Holyrood leader joined others in the party in voicing concerns about whether the Prime Minister’s chief adviser should continue in the role.
Mr Carlaw had previously said Mr Cummings’ role was a situation for the Prime Minister to judge.
His statement came after Moray MP Douglas Ross resigned from his role as a junior minister in the Scotland Office on Tuesday over Mr Cummings’ journey.
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Tory MSPs Adam Tomkins and Donald Cameron had also called for Mr Cummings to go.
Mr Carlaw spoke to broadcasters at the Scottish Parliament on Tuesday.
He told STV News: “I’m very sorry that Douglas Ross has left the government, he was a huge asset to the Government and to the fight against the virus, and he will be a big loss for Scotland.
“But I fully respect and understand the decision he took.”
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