Boris is the 'man to unite Tories,' says Dorries - but no 'I don't fancy him, not a bit'

19 June 2022, 21:00 | Updated: 19 June 2022, 21:18

By Asher McShane

The Culture Secretary has dismissed scandal surrounding Boris Johnson, coming out to bat for the PM, saying that he has always been the man to “unite the Conservative party”.

In a frank interview with Rachael Johnson on LBC ahead of a phone-in, Nadine Dorries also shrugged off the ‘adoring memes’ of her gazing at the prime minister, saying: “I don’t fancy [him]. Not a bit.”

Talking about her support of Boris, Nadine said: “It was absolutely obvious Boris would get the Conservatives the kind of majority they deserved.

“I’ve always seen the potential in him. He… had the radical agenda to get things done that needed to be done.”

Nadine spoke out about this meme of her gazing at the PM saying "I don't fancy him"
Nadine spoke out about this meme of her gazing at the PM saying "I don't fancy him". Picture: Parliament TV

Rachael asked Nadine how she views the PM: “You do look at him in a particular way. I’m sure listeners have seen the memes!”

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Nadine replied: “I’ve seen that so many times. I look at Keir Starmer in the same way and no-one ever does memes of that!”

“First of all, I don’t fancy your brother, just in case you’re going to ask me that,” Nadine joked. “Not a bit”.

She explained she thought Boris promoted her to culture secretary as he ‘knew she’d deliver’ in the post.

“To get things done in Westminster sometimes you’ve got to find ways ‘round and through,” she said.

“He knew I wasn’t someone who was going to ‘go down the road of process’.

“I’m proud to say we are knocking it out of the park in my department.”

She also said “thank goodness” that the BBC licence fee was frozen.

“It was an absolute commitment to do that. Trying to keep people’s bills down at a time when they are seriously suffering with the cost-of-living crisis was something we had to achieve.”

Nadine’s comments on the PM’s leadership come weeks after he narrowly survived a confidence vote.

59% of Conservative MPs backed Mr Johnson, with 41% voting against him, in the vote sparked in the wake of the partygate scandal.

It was enough for him to continue as leader of the party. Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer said a "divided" Conservative Party was "propping up" Mr Johnson after he survived the confidence vote.

Current party rules dictate that once a leader garners enough support in a confidence vote, they are immune from another vote for a year.

But Tories on the 1922 Committee of backbench MPs are said to be looking into how to change the rules so Mr Johnson could face another vote within six months.