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Harlow MP Robert Halfon “regrets writing tweet” over PM adviser Dominic Cummings

News / Sun 24th May 2020 am31 11:22am

HARLOW MP Robert Halfon has “expressed his regrets” at tweeting in support of the prime minister’s government adviser Dominic Cummings after it was revealed the the adviser travelled from London to Durham contrary to government guidance on lockdown.

Mr Halfon said: “I would first like to make it clear to residents that I regret writing the tweet yesterday in the way I did about the Number 10 political adviser and his movements. I am really sorry for it. I do not support, or condone anyone who has broken the law or regulations. Anyone who has done so should face the consequences.

My focus will and should always be to support residents during the coronavirus outbreak, help local businesses stay afloat and work hard to back our frontline healthcare professionals who continue to save lives. It is important for everyone to follow public health advice, that includes members of the government and their advisors. If those regulations or laws have been breached there should be serious consequences.

“The tweet was wrong because many thousands of people in Harlow and across the country have suffered and struggled enormously during the coronavirus. It has caused significant pain and hardship. My tweet did not recognise that. I am sorry.

My original Tweet was aimed at the four year old child because I thought at the time that both parents had been ill with coronavirus, genuinely had no one to look after the infant – and for this reason had taken the child to their extended family to be looked after. I thought that to do this was within the regulations.

The Deputy Chief Medical Officer was asked at the daily coronavirus conference on 24 March 2020, what parents who showed symptoms of Covid-19 should do when it came to childcare. She said: “Clearly if you have adults who are unable to look after a small child, that is an exceptional circumstance.

“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.”

The official guidelines also define a “reasonable excuse” to leave home include providing “personal care… to a vulnerable person”.

Having said all this, if it is true as reported in today’s Sunday Newspapers that there have been breaches of the regulations by this individual, then without doubt action should be taken by the appropriate authorities. No one – whoever they are – should be above the regulations or the rule of law.

I recognise that the Labour leader of the Council – is seeking to make as much political capital as possible and misses no opportunity to score political points as, sadly, he has frequently done over the past two months, especially on social media. I reiterate my request to him to work together for the good of Harlow rather than jumping on every party political bandwagon that passes by.

When the senior Labour Labour MP Stephen Kinnock was criticised all over the news for allegedly breaking the lockdown regulations, (https://www.itv.com/news/wales/2020-03-30/police-urge-mp-stephen-kinnock-to-comply-with-coronavirus-lockdown-rules-after-visiting-dad-on-birthday/ and visited by the police, I said nothing about it. Neither did he. Nor did he send a press release to this newspaper condemning this behaviour. I said nothing because although it was a Labour MP who had apparently breached the rules, I did not want to jump on every political bandwagon that came along.

By contrast, I thank the respected former Labour leader of Harlow Council Jon Clempner – one of the finest Council Leaders Harlow has ever had – who whilst criticising my tweet in Your Harlow, wrote movingly about his unwell mother on social media. It was one of many reasons why I realised that my tweet was wrong. I wish Jon and his family all good health. He was right. I was wrong.

I and many other community figures will work together to build an even better Harlow for the future and above all, make sure that those residents suffering from health and financial anxieties are looked after as much as possible. Please contact me if you need any help or assistance. I hope very much that we can all leave home and see our loved ones soon and that this awful pandemic will be over.

“I wish every resident in Harlow and our villages every good health and safety. I will continue to work hard for all residents”.

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9 Comments for Harlow MP Robert Halfon “regrets writing tweet” over PM adviser Dominic Cummings:

MickeyB
2020-05-24 17:28:44

I see Mr Halfon must have received some serious stick for licking Johnson's ass yesterday and has been forced into a grovelling apology today. Johnson has seriously miscalculated if he believes this is now going to be put on the back burner. The country is furious not only with the selfishness and arrogance of Cummings but now astonished and bitterly angry that their swashbuckling Prime Minister has shown himself to be weak, inept and dismissive of the Great British pubic's sacrifice over the past couple of months. No Tory MP will be safe from villification by their constituents over this matter until Cummings is gone and Johnson shows some mettle.

MickeyB
2020-05-24 17:35:53

I see Mr Halfon must have received some serious stick for licking Johnson's ass yesterday and has been forced into a grovelling apology today. Johnson has seriously miscalculated if he believes this is now going to be put on the back burner. The country is furious not only with the selfishness and arrogance of Cummings but now astonished and bitterly angry that their swashbuckling Prime Minister has shown himself to be weak, inept and dismissive of the Great British pubic's sacrifice over the past couple of months. No Tory MP will be safe from villification by their constituents over this matter until Cummings is gone and Johnson shows some mettle. And another thing. Mr Halfon apologises because he believes what is said in today's papers not what was said in yesterdays. So does he stand by his original tweet if what is said in Sundays papers turns out not to be true?

kthe5
2020-05-24 20:20:55

https://bylinetimes.com/2020/05/24/14000-brits-could-now-appeal-lockdown-fines-thanks-to-dominic-cummings/ "The Government’s attempts to shore up the position of the Prime Minister’s chief advisor Dominic Cummings, by suggesting that the lockdown provisions are a matter of ‘individual responsibility’, may lead to the courts being swamped with appeals against fines imposed under its Coronavirus regulations."

MickyB77
2020-05-25 06:37:23

Nothing to say about young Kinnock's dash from Wales, to wish his father a Happy Birthday, typical of the ilk.

durcant
2020-05-25 07:59:28

There is no defence over the actions of this well informed gentleman. He is the person putting the words into the PM mouth promoting safety’s and stay at home. He chose to ignore his own advise to the PM. What makes him so special. This won’t go away and the only options you can restore any level of trust is for him to accept and step away. Trying to shift the story onto someone else is frankly pathetic. People are still dying. People are still recovering. People are still scared. People need to keep staying safe. Don’t treat people as fools. Please stay sensible and safe.

kthe5
2020-05-25 08:52:31

https://yougov.co.uk/topics/politics/survey-results/daily/2020/05/23/56b74/2 52% think Dominic Cummings should resign from his job as adviser to the Prime Minister, and as we all know, 52% is THE WILL OF THE PEOPLE! The People have spoken! Why are the elites in power ignoring THE PEOPLE? The People want Dominic Cummings to LEAVE, and LEAVE NOW!! No, he should not get a severance package or any sort of deal. NO DEAL for Dominic Cummings to LEAVE! Why are lib-tard snowflake Prime Ministers not respecting the will of The People and wanting Dominic Cummings to REMAIN in his job? It's about time REMAINER Prime Ministers listened to the will of The People and made Dominic Cummings LEAVE. If Dominic Cummings does LEAVE his job, his salary can be spent on the NHS. Write that on the side of a bus!

MickyB77
2020-05-25 12:22:09

Imagine,Socialists quoting, "the will of the people".

MickyB77
2020-05-27 15:31:14

Just an aside, the Tories, even with all the snide Leftie attacks, are still way ahead in the voting intentions of the general public. No fake figures kthe5, but the YouGov team, your well scanned bible.

MickyB77
2020-05-27 15:45:34

And durcant, a couple of weeks ago you were telling everybody,that, trying to score cheap political shots should be put to one side, until the pandemic is over. Really, cos it's my true colours etc.

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