Labour backs SNP call to slash Johnson’s salary ‘on basis of behaviour’

Labour will back an SNP no confidence motion in Boris Johnson which would cut the prime minister’s pay by more than £40,000 “on the basis of his behaviour”.

The motion – which will be debated in the Commons on Wednesday – suggests that the prime minister should be censured after weeks of turmoil, sparked by the Owen Paterson sleaze scandal.

It accuses the prime minister of “frequently violating the sixth principle of public life”, that holders of public office should be truthful.

And it lashed out at Johnson for trying to undermine the recommendations of the Commons standards committee, which found Paterson guilty of an “egregious” breach of parliamentary lobbying rules.

‘Shamed our democracy’

Discussing the motion – which Labour sources told HuffPost they will back – on Tuesday, the SNP’s leader in Westminster Ian Blackford said it was more “meaningful” than a “gesture”.

“It isn’t really a motion of no confidence,” he told Times Radio. “We’re asking for something specific and that is the prime minister’s ministerial salary to be docked on the basis of his behaviour.

“We all understand that we’ve got to deal with the Covid pandemic — that’s first and foremost a responsibility that we that we all have — but the fact remains that this is a prime minister that quite frankly has shamed our democracy, he shames parliament.”

Blackford added: “This is a man that’s not fit for office.”

Peerages and breaches

The SNP motion criticised Johnson for ignoring “independent advice” on breaches of the ministerial code by his Cabinet, and for putting forward proposals that would “diminish the powers of the Electoral Commission – as well as handing peerages to Tory donors.

It proposes slashing his salary by £41,567 – reducing it to £115,805.

Johnson earned £157,372 this year – £75,440 for his work as prime minister, on top of his £81,932 salary as the MP for Uxbridge and South Ruislip.

A No10 spokesperson said :“People from across the United Kingdom and Scotland want to see politicians and the public pulling together to focus on the issues that matter to them — like protecting lives, jobs and recovering from the effects of covid-19 on our economy and public services.

“The prime minister is focusing on just that — encouraging people to come forward for their booster jabs when called and driving forward our plans to build back better as we recover from the pandemic.”

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Henry Goodwin

Henry is a reporter with a keen interest in politics and current affairs. He read History at the University of Cambridge and has a Masters in Newspaper Journalism from City, University of London. Follow him on Twitter: @HenGoodwin.

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