Michael Fabricant

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There cannot be one rule for some and one for others when it comes to coronavirus restrictions, Lichfield and Burntwood’s MP has said.

Dominic Cummings has been at the centre of controversy after the Prime Minister’s senior adviser was found to have travelled to Durham during the lockdown.

Despite some MPs calling for him to sacked, Boris Johnson has moved to stand by his man during a press briefing yesterday (25th May).

Conservative MP Michael Fabricant had previously said he “neither supports nor condemns” Mr Cummings.

But he has now said he recognises why passions are running high across the country.

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“I understand the anger of many people regarding the Dominic Cummings issue. 

“Everyone has to abide by the lockdown rules during this coronavirus period for the safety of others. 

“It is infuriating when most have stuck to the rules while a few others have ignored them. 

“There cannot be one rule for some and not for others.

“With regard to Dominic Cummings, it is not clear he has broken the rules.

“He has a vulnerable 4 year old and – as I understand it – when one of the child’s parents became ill, they decided to drive direct to the grandparent’s house where the child could be cared for and they could isolate for 14 days in a separate building.

“This is permissible under the regulations as there are clear written exemptions in the case of children’s welfare.

“Provided that this was adhered to, and in particular that he did not break the full quarantine period, that he remained at home with his wife and came into no contact with others, Cummings acted within the rules.”

Michael Fabricant MP

“Cummings had access to family”

The Police and Crime Commissioner for Durham has now asked officers to investigate the facts surrounding Mr Cummings’ trip from London.

Mr Fabricant said that appropriate steps should be taken if the Prime Minister’s advisor has been found to have broken the law.

“If there were undeniable evidence that he did not maintain the quarantine and so endangered others, he should, of course, be immediately sacked and face possible prosecution.

“The deputy chief medical officer for England, Dr Jenny Harries, made it clear right at the beginning of the lockdown who could look after a child if both parents or carers were incapacitated

“She said: ‘Clearly if you have adults who are unable to look after a small child, that is an exceptional circumstance. And if the individuals do not have access to care support – formal care support – or to family, they will be able to work through their local authority hubs’.

“In this instance, Cummings had access to family.”

Michael Fabricant MP

“I am always wary when there is an apparent witch hunt”

Mr Fabricant has been subject to suggestions around his own movements during the coronavirus crisis.

And he said this experience had made him reluctant to cast aspersions at this stage.

“I am personally very conscious that there has to be reliable evidence.

“I was ‘spotted in Wales’ several times during the lockdown and this was reported on twitter and Facebook when, in fact, I was – and still am – in Lichfield during the whole period of the lockdown.

“I am always wary when there is an apparent witch hunt aimed at one individual.

“There has to be fairness to society as a whole and as applied to an individual.

“But, I repeat, if there is firm proof that he broke the 14 day quarantine and endangered others, or that he made multiple visits to Durham – all of which Cummings denies – then he will have to resign or be sacked.”

Michael Fabricant MP

Ross

Founder of Lichfield Live and editor of the site.

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32 Comments

  1. MF’s view is changing according to the direction of public opinion as we see here compared with his previous utterance. MF is an irrelevance to me and his thoughts lack weight and conviction. Sorry, Michael.

  2. Oh Michael, your voters feel this, it’s real anger. It isn’t a concept like brexit, it’s real raw emotion and people have sacrificed a lot.
    You have been sitting on the fence and this just looks like you’ve jumped on the bandwagon of popular feeling.
    Too little, too late.

  3. If a person of Cummings resources was not able to stay at home what chances for us lesser mortals that did? His belligerent attitude is well known and his disregard for normal procedure.
    What is at stake here is credibility. We now have a non elected government puppeteer broadcasting to the nation. Such arrogance is unprecedented.
    Get real government, people have sacrificed. If you expect them to continue, in the light of life and livelihoods, you need to be HONEST.
    This is a shoddy, sorry state of affairs. There is NO excuse! Sack him NOW!

  4. If Mr Cummings had a known past record of understanding/accepting the current situation in context, this action on his part would be seen as exceptional and given perhaps some understanding. But the premise does not apply; he is an inveterate maverick – precisely why he has attained his current position – and he has often clearly expressed his contempt for the status quo as he sees it. In this respect his action is far more in keeping with his attitude that some conventions/guidelines/rules do not apply to him. At a time when adherence to these rules (and described as such by Matt Hancock) is almost sacrosanct and they have been followed by so many at great personal pain, there is already enough material on this to suggest strongly that he did infringe the stipulations in both spirit and letter. The associated aspect of the determined/obstinate manner with which the PM and members of the cabinet have sought to justify his behaviour (often via crass tweets) has simply not helped matters, giving rise to a widespread public perception that they need him more than he needs them. The fact that Mr Fabricant is trying to ride both horses in this race reveals perhaps the divided attitudes within the Conservative Party more than any other aspect such as public opinion.

  5. Mr Fabricant – I now have the full facts from Dominic Cummings himself. My view has not changed, in some respects they have hardened. He rewrote the guidelines to suit himself when millions of us have made sacrifices and taken difficult decisions in order to follow those guidelines.
    The exceptional circumstances he cites did not exist at that time, if they did they were not widely explained by the Government.
    Mr Cummings remains the story, as does the PM’s judgement.

  6. It would really help if someone could point to the guidance about exceptional circumstances and small children that Cummings and the government keep referring to. It may well exist, but so far I’ve only heard assurances from government figures that it does, not a specific reference to it.

  7. Your comments are somewhat reasonable. Mr Cummins statement however which included comments can’t recall stopping
    For fuel, can’t recall conversation with PM, testing his eye sight. It’s lawyer talk, it’s not for the heart it’s say as little as you can and leave the opposition to dig up and present the dirt. It’s not a demonstration
    Of an ethical honest character. Cameron asker all called him a psychopath! That’s not a compliment.

  8. It would seem one of the justifications Cummings has given for his disregard for the government instructions is the amount of harassment he was getting outside his London house. Can we be clear if he was getting this harassment before or after he went to Durham? Surely there was not an issue before he broke the lockdown so why were the media there? Most people did not even know he was the Prime Minister’s crutch. I don’t remember anything in the news prior to this outrage.

  9. Here is the portal where you can send a message to Mr Fabricant: https://www.theyworkforyou.com/mp/10193/michael_fabricant/lichfield

    I have done so and would encourage you all to do the same. I came down with Covid-19 symptoms in March and my spouse was also ill. We stayed at home and looked after our child instead of travelling hundreds of miles to our relatives’ homes. We have some common decency, a quality lacking in Downing Street at present time.

  10. Michael’s opinion will always follow the leader in the case Domanic Cummings it’s evident his populist Nationalist ideology is in full swing within the conservative party and a hapless ,cheeky (once popular) chappy Boris Johnson is his choice of puppet .
    And in all fairness he couldn’t of broken the law ,it was never law ,what he did was the unforgivable ,while people forwent saying their goodbyes to loved ones dying alone in isolated beds ,didn’t visit their parents or loved ones for fear of spreading Covid 19 and being unable to attend funerals.
    The man behind the slogans stay at home ,protect the NHS did the complete opposite ,you may well be in a safe seat Michael but I suspect unless Cummings goes your party will be finished .

  11. Chief Political Correspondent at the FT said that No 10 was using ‘WhatsApp’ to order MP’s to ‘circle the wagons’.
    https://twitter.com/PickardJE/status/1264132468573196288
    Looks like the Government would rather endure the public tarnishing rather than sack Cummings. He is far too valuable for them to sack. They may move him ‘sideways’ but I cannot see them sacking him, without him the cover is blown. Behind closed doors something else is going on. We are being lied to for sure.

  12. Mr Fabricant really needs to climb down off that fence…..

    It’s the attitude and barefaced arrogance of Cummings that people are more angry about I feel. Does anyone remember Spitting Image? The David Owen/David Steele puppets spring to mind when one thinks of Boris and Cummings……Cummings living in the shirt pocket of Boris….safe, cosseted, protected.

    It’s depressing and sickening in equal measure and, our MP is just contributing to this.

  13. How does a non elected advisor get to make a televised address to defend their actions in the first place?? This is unprecedented- and smacks of desperation from Boris, who obviously sanctioned this. What next? No 10 Cleaner gives televised address defending his/her failure to dust properly?? It’s insane.

    He has to go, and Boris desperately needs a backbone….as does Mr Fabricant.

  14. UK 2020 corruption: IDOX NHS track-n-track contract. Director Alice Cummings (see companies house) Contract agreed around the time of the “life saving” 260 mile trip to Durham & Barnard castle. Look who’s now a director.

  15. It is Boris Johnson who must now resign. His inept handling of the pandemic crisis, the endless unfulfilled promises and shameless lies, and now his brazen support for the nationally-despised advisor Cummings, have made him unfit to govern. The time has come for a government of national unity – of all parties – to urgently and properly organise our essential services, and hopefully prevent a deadly second wave of the pandemic.

  16. Is this not the tip of the iceberg relating to the running of our country and local councils. You elect representatives but people behind the scenes run the show. Cummings certainly gave the impression that Johnson could not operate without him. Likewise at the local level, at council meetings they almost slavishly follow the reports from council employee’s (unelected).
    The civil service have long held a dominant hand in affairs. Needed perhaps at some level, but when Johnson speaks where are his words coming from.
    I have long thought our ‘democracy ‘ is in need of a root and branch investigation and revision. In theory it is supposed to be government for the people by the people. I think what we have seen recently manifestly shows this is not the case.

  17. Too many unanswered questions. They both work, who looks after child then. Do advisors receive security protection.
    Be interesting to see if police investigation is now quietly dropped.

  18. Exactly Phillip councillors don’t make the decisions. The people behind do. Look at the evidence of how Lichfield is and is becoming. Need to say anything? About time the councillors started representing the community and not developers.

  19. Barnard Castle is the site of one of GlaxoSmithKline’s facilities: They’re one of the companies working on a vaccine.

  20. Could someone hopefully Michael clarify for me why Domanic Cummings wife states he was unable to get out of bed for ten days from the 28th of March ,yet acourding to his briefing he was picking his son up from hospital on the 3rd of April
    It’s making a mockery of all these cabinet ministers saying they understand and believe the account and reasons for his actions .

  21. @Smarty – we had a boo here. I have just received a boilerplate response from Fabricant as he can’t be bothered to reply to his constituents individually. It is an insult to our intelligence: bland and full of platitudes. Fabbo does tell us that’s it’s OK to travel to other parts of the country and risk spreading the virus around if you need childcare, though, so thank you for the clarification Mr Fabricant. As someone who was unwell for weeks on end and stayed home taking responsibility for my own child, I appreciate that and will ‘follow my instincts’ if there is a next time. Why not pop to a hospital and on a nice day-trip elsewhere in the country if you need to, too? England is our oyster, it would seem.

  22. I have had the same email from MF. Far from sitting on the fence, he is tacitly supporting BoJo and Cummings by not criticising the pair. Disappointing Fabbo

  23. That’s just irresponsible advice – the legislation was brought in for safeguarding not childcare. I can’t believe this. They’re making it up as they go along and it endangers life.

  24. As fate would have it, myself and my wife are key workers returning to work on Monday so, I will be making a 65 mil round trip to my nearest family member In order to drop my Y7 son off – purely for childcare purposes.

    All sanctioned and agreed by Michael Fabricant, Dominic Cummings, and Boris Johnson.

  25. A letter was sent to every British household that stated;
    “That is why we are giving one simple instruction – you must stay at home.
    You should not meet friends or relatives who do not live in your home. You may only leave your home for very limited purposes, such as buying food and medicine, exercising once a day and seeking medical attention. You can travel to and from work but should work from home if you can.”

    No mention of travelling hundreds of miles to secure childcare.

    Mr Cummings, Mr Johnson and now Mr Fabricant are mocking the sacrifices we have all made. Some have paid with their lives, some have paid with their jobs.

  26. Hopefully Ross will pick up on this
    Both Fabricant and Pincher voted for a reduction in food standards during the vote the other day. It passed to open up the way for GM, Chlorine chicken, Hormone filled beef etc. It will be the demise of UK farming
    Lichfield is a Rural market city

  27. Fabricant is about as much use as a chocolate fire guard.

    I’m still waiting for him to reply to my questions on his stance on IR35 (tax for self employed) from weeks ago. He simply has no regard for his constituents, merely rambling on about how he can’t wait to get trade deals done with Bhutan, Laos and all these other countries that are gagging for our goods and services. I get that a member of the ruling party has to be concerned with national and international issues, but what about local ones? He constantly sits on the fence, has no in-constituency surgeries and ignores key issues like HS2. Why isn’t he campaigning to bin this? It brings no benefit to Lichfield (and little for the country) yet destroys large parts of it, costing billions we never had before the current crisis, let alone now?

    If he can’t tackle these issues he’s never going to criticise the buffoon at the top.

  28. Is it true that Dominic Cummings’ sister works for IDOX who were awarded the contract to do the ‘Trace & Track’ App? This might explain why the Government didn’t go for the existing Google/Apple API which is available, tested and works and that the ‘home grown’ app is nowhere to be seen? Nice little earner for the ‘cash strapped’ Cummings family in these dark times, especially as Dom is down to part owning his last few properties/farms and private woods in Durham along with his wife’s Chillingham Castle. The architect of Brexit whose farm used to get a £250,000 EU Subsidy coupled with his life long attack on ‘people of privilege’, sharply honed at Public School and Oxford!

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