Boris Johnson’s senior aide Dominic Cummings is reportedly planning to step back from politics when Brexit is achieved.
A source – who they claim ‘knows him well’ – told the Daily Mail he plans to step back in six months’ time when he believes Brexit will be done.
They said: ‘Dominic has not decided what to do. He will stay in his job if it seems worthwhile and [he] can improve things – otherwise he probably won’t.’
The Spectator – where his wife works – reports he will consider himself ‘largely redundant’ by Christmas if the reforms of Whitehall he has proposed are completed.
A senior source told the newspaper: ‘Dominic has not decided what to do. He had to delay medical treatment unrelated to Covid because of the virus. He will deal with that when the pandemic is over and then discuss things with Mary. He will stay in his job if it seems worthwhile and [he] can improve things – otherwise he probably won’t.’
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The story – which the newspaper admits is a ‘face-saving measure to resolve a bitter clash’ with the PM and MPs – appeared to be pulled from the website shortly after Mail Online published it, but it went out on the front page of the newspaper.
The report seems unlikely to quieten calls for Cummings to go now, following a police report that he may have committed a ‘minor breach’ of lockdown rules.
Others responded with scepticism to the headline, with an apparent distrust over Johnson’s most senior adviser at an all time high.
‘If Cummings – or the Daily Mail – thinks we’re putting up with six more months of this shit they’ve got another thing coming,’ tweeted TNE columnist Tim Walker.
‘So… at Christmas. When epidemiologists say we’re almost certain to see a second wave of infections that will kill more people,’ wrote the Mirror’s Fleet Street Fox.
‘Is this ‘news’ supposed to make the public and MPs give up the fight to oust him, as he’ll supposedly be gone soon anyway?’ asked Sue Wilson.
‘Some colleagues are sceptical to say the least,’ wrote journalist Jim Pickard.
‘Pull the other one – in six months we’ll find we’ve been taken for gullible saps again and he’s still doing damage and staying. He has to go now!’ posted Philip C James.
‘Cummings once again shows us who is in charge — and it clearly ain’t Boris Johnson,’ noted Jane Symons.