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Keir Starmer would have no option but to resign if fined over Beergate, Dan Hodges says
9 May 2022, 07:51 | Updated: 9 May 2022, 08:32
Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer would have "absolutely no other option" but to resign if fined by Durham police over beergate, political commentator Dan Hodges has told LBC.
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Sir Keir has faced a growing backlash from MPs after Durham Constabulary confirmed it was investigating claims of an evening event he attended with other senior party figures and activists last year might have broken Covid rules in place.
The Labour Party leader was pictured having a beer and curry at a campaign event, with a leaked memo showing the event was planned in advance.
Sir Keir has said that he is "confident" that he did not breach lockdown rules and Labour has insisted that the event attended by its leader was a "work visit" and within the Covid rules at the time.
At the time of the gathering, non-essential retail and outdoor venues including pub gardens were open but social distancing rules - which included a ban on indoor mixing between households - remained in place.
Mr Hodges told LBC that the police will have to determine whether Sir Keir broke the law.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson, his wife Carrie and Chancellor Rishi Sunak have all already been fined by the police for Covid lockdown breaches.
Mr Johnson is the first sitting British Prime Minister to have been found to have broken the law.
He added: "But obviously there's the hypocrisy. Obviously, as you're aware, Keir Starmer called for Boris [Johnson] to resign purely at the moment the police opened their investigation. He's now also being investigated himself."
Having the curry had been "arranged" and "had always been party of [Keir Starmer's] schedule days before", Mr Hodges told LBC.
He added: "[Keir Starmer] was trying to imply that they were working and almost having the curry whilst working. We can see from the schedule that certainly wasn't the plan.
"And obviously, the other crucial thing, he has consistently said that once they finished the curry they went back to work. Now the memo makes very clear that wasn't in the schedule. I've also spoken to somebody who was actually at the event. Other journalists have also spoken to people who were at the event, and we've all had the same confirmation that that just simply wasn't true."
Nick then asked: "And if, and I stress if it were Durham Police did investigate and they felt it necessary to fine the leader of the Labour Party, what then?"
Mr Hodges replied: "He'd resign. He would have absolutely no other option."