Boris Johnson will rebut claims that he intentionally misled Parliament while serving as British prime Minister.
A parliamentary committee is looking into Johnson's claims that Covid-19 guidelines and rules were not followed during his time at 10 Downing Street. Johnson will be giving evidence.
Johnson already admitted Monday in writing that he accepted the comments made to parliament in 2021. However, he denies making them intentionally. He also claims that trusted aides gave him assurances at the time that no rules had been broken.
London's Metropolitan Police issued over 100 fines to Downing Street employees for violating pandemic regulations during periods of lockdown.
Some of these violations occurred at parties where people were drinking alcohol. This is why the scandal was called 'Partygate'. Johnson, who was forced to resign last July after a series ethics scandals, was fined because he attended a party where he received a birthday cake.
Johnson's denial centers around his response to the committee's suggestion, that Johnson would have known that rules and guidelines were being ignored.
According to the most recent report of the committee on the investigation, the evidence strongly suggests that Johnson would have known about breaches of guidance when he was present at the gatherings.
Johnson retorted that it was obvious to him and that it would be obvious to everyone else when the committee publishes the photos as part of its evidence. Johnson also pointed out that many of these photos were taken by Downing Street's official photographer.
Johnson stated in writing that Johnson did not believe Johnson was suggesting that we would have allowed official photographers to immortalize events that were clearly against the Rules and Guidance.
Johnson claimed that the committee and the reports it produced on the subject were biased. He said it was important to note his disappointment at the Fourth Report's highly partisan tone.
Johnson's 52-page written evidence is peppered by additional claims and evidence. He believes that this evidence proves that Johnson could not have known about any illegality at Downing Street when he made his misleading statement to parliament.
It will be crucial to determine whether the committee believes Johnson, who was photographed at events where guidelines were clearly not being observed, is plausible.
It is not an investigation into whether rules were broken. Johnson has admitted that they were. This is not an investigation into Johnson's incorrect statements to Parliament: Johnson has admitted that he made them and has corrected the record.
It is important to determine if he really believed that no guidelines or rules had been broken when telling parliament.
This is a complex question and Johnson will not be able to answer it. It doesn't really matter to Johnson if he can convince the members of the committee one way or another. It will not matter how harshly the committee punishes Johnson, if it finds him guilty.
It is accepted that he will be convicted and there could be three sanctions.
First, Johnson apologizes to parliament. Johnson is suspended for less than 10 sitting days. The Johnson is suspended for a period of more than 10 sittings.
Although it would be embarrassing, an apology will have little to no consequences other than humiliation. Here is where things get tricky. Both would require a vote, but Johnson could lose his seat if the suspension is extended.
Voting on Johnson's fate may lead to bitter arguments within the ruling Conservative party. Although it is a minority, some Conservatives still pledge loyalty to Johnson. Others wish Johnson would go.
The seven-member committee is made up of three MPs from the opposition and four Conservatives. If Johnson's evidence is convincing enough, the Conservative majority could seek a more relaxed sanction. Johnson may also hope that Johnson's evidence packs enough punch to make opposition MPs favor a softer sanction to temper the claims of a witch hunt.