Sue Gray will soon be here! Anticipation builds on social media for release of partygate report 1

Sue Gray will soon be here! Anticipation builds on social media for release of partygate report

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Britons eagerly awaiting the Sue Gray report into ‘partygate’ are comparing the wait to the build up to Christmas or to their GCSE’s results – with one joking: ‘I hope they aren’t as disappointing as mine’.

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The senior civil servant’s highly-anticipated dossier into claims of parties held at Downing Street during Covid lockdown could be published as early as today.

Boris Johnson, who has repeatedly insisted people wait for the findings of the probe, is bracing for a shattering 48 hours that could define his premiership.

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It comes amid reports Ms Gray has identified eight parties that breached the rules and that the civil servant has obtained images of Mr Johnson ‘by bottles of wine’ at an alleged lockdown breaking party.

As the country eagerly awaits the publication of the findings, which could ultimately end Mr Johnson’s premiership if Tory MPs decide to table a non-confidence vote, Britons have taken to social media to parody the situation.

Twitter users have flooded the site with memes about the wait, which has been extended due to the emergency of new allegations, while others have even written poems about the dossier.

One Twitter user wrote: ‘Waiting for the Sue Gray report is more exciting than waiting for Christmas.’

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Another wrote: ‘Waiting for the Sue Gray report is like waiting for GCSE results. I hope people are not disappointed like I was.’

Others compared the wait to the BBC police drama Line of Duty, which left millions in suspense as they eagerly waited to find out the identity of organised crime boss ‘H’ – only for the criminal mastermind to be unmasked as a bumbling police chief.

The wrote: ‘Waiting for the Sue Gray report is like waiting for the last episode of Line of Duty.

‘It’s kind of exciting. You hope it’s going to give you all the answers, fear that it may be an anticlimax, and have slightly lost track of the plot after so many twists and turns and red herrings.’ 

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Britons eagerly awaiting the Sue Gray (pictured) report into 'partygate' are comparing the wait to the build up to Christmas or to their GCSE's results - with one joking: 'I hope they aren't as disappointing as mine'

Britons eagerly awaiting the Sue Gray (pictured) report into ‘partygate’ are comparing the wait to the build up to Christmas or to their GCSE’s results – with one joking: ‘I hope they aren’t as disappointing as mine’

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Others drew in the situation with Russia on the Ukraine border, as fears grow that President Vladimir Putin may attempt to launch an invasion of the European nation.

Twitter user Alex Tomlinson said: ‘Anyone else get the feeling that Putin is waiting for the Sue Gray report?’ 

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Meanwhile others rolled out classic memes, including Michael Jackson eating popcorn, with the caption: ‘Everyone waiting for the Sue Gray report’.

Others shared a picture of skeletons round a table, with the tag line: ‘Waiting for Sue Gray.’

Another shared the meme of the character of Rose Dawson from the blockbuster film Titanic, in which she she says ‘it’s been 84 years’, with the caption ‘Waiting for Sue Gray like…’.

Poets have also joined in, creating works about Ms Gray and her report. One, Brian Bilston, in a poem posted on his Instagram, wrote: ‘All the people on the radio are talking about Sue Gray. It is a matter for Sue Gray, they say. 

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In another line, he wrote: ‘… I, too, would like to wait for Sue Gray and so, when I think about what’s for dinner, whether to make pasta or falafel, I decide this to be a matter for Sue Gray.’

Another, Tony Frobisher, under the title ‘Waiting’, wrote: ‘I’ll wait for the report. I’ll wait for the cake…. I’ll wait, I’ll wait, I’ll wait.’

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It comes as Boris Johnson is bracing for a shattering 48 hours that could define his premiership with the Partygate report set to be released as early as today.

The PM and his aides are bunkered down waiting for Ms Gray to deliver her findings about the swathe of allegedly lockdown-busting gatherings in Downing Street and Whitehall.

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The level of criticism – and whether it is directed at Mr Johnson personally – will be critical to his chances of survival, after Tories held back from mounting a coup to see the results.

Allies have been desperately mobilising to shore up the premier, with Jacob Rees-Mogg warning that ousting him would almost certainly trigger a snap general election.

But even if he can stave off the immediate threat the police have already announced they are carrying out a criminal probe, which could see him become the first sitting PM interviewed under caution.

There had been hopes Mr Johnson could publish the top civil servant’s conclusions in time for PMQs, but that timeline appears to be slipping – although he could yet come to the Commons again this afternoon for what will inevitably be a marathon grilling from MPs.

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There is also set to be a huge row about how much of the report is released. The Cabinet Office initially suggested yesterday that Ms Gray would hold off publishing until the Met had completed their probe.

But that stance was abandoned after Scotland Yard made clear they had no objection to the findings being issued in full.

In a round of interviews this morning, Foreign Secretary Liz Truss indicated that some of the report might be held back for ‘security’ reasons.

Asked if the report will be published in full, Ms Truss told Sky News: ‘We have been absolutely clear that we will publish the findings of the report.

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‘We don’t know the content of the report, so there could be, for example, security issues that mean parts of it are problematic to publish. But we will absolutely publish the findings of the report.’

Ms Truss said the government had to acknowledge ‘public anger’. But she said: ‘I think the PM should continue in office. I think he is doing a great job… I support him 100 per cent.’

One Tory plotter last night claimed five more MPs are poised to call for the PM’s resignation as soon as the report is published.

A no-confidence vote is automatically triggered when 54 MPs send letters to the chair of the powerful 1922 committee, Sir Graham Brady – although he never discloses how many he has received before the threshold is reached.

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‘We’ve got cake, if you’d like to pop in?’: GMB shows empty chair after NO Tory minister turns up to explain latest No10 partygate revelations (but Liz Truss is happy to appear on Sky News) 

Good Morning Britain showed an empty chair today after no Tory minister turned up to defend Boris Johnson – even though Liz Truss was happy to appear on Sky News and Today.

‘We’ve got cake’, joked presenter Adil Ray, in a reference to the Prime Minister meeting with staff to celebrate his birthday party in the height of lockdown when indoor gatherings were banned.

His co-host Susanna Reid said they had asked for a minister to appear on the programme but had not been able to get anyone to agree. ‘We’ll keep you updated on that situation – the chair is empty,’ she added. 

GMB presenter Adil Ray gestured to an empty chair as he and Susanna Reid explained that no minister had agreed to appear

GMB presenter Adil Ray gestured to an empty chair as he and Susanna Reid explained that no minister had agreed to appear 

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Mr Ray weighed in, joking: ‘If any government ministers are around, we do have some cake over here if you’d like to come in. We can ambush you with a slice of cake.

‘Some cheese and wine are around as well, so lots of reasons for you to perhaps pop in if you would like to.’

On her broadcast round elsewhere this morning, Ms Truss indicated that some of the contents of Sue Gray’s report into the Partygate scandal – which is set to be released imminently – might be held back for ‘security’ reasons.

Asked if the report will be published in full, the Foreign Secretary told Sky News: ‘We have been absolutely clear that we will publish the findings of the report.

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‘We don’t know the content of the report, so there could be, for example, security issues that mean parts of it are problematic to publish. But we will absolutely publish the findings of the report.’

Ms Truss said the government had to acknowledge ‘public anger’. But she said: ‘I think the PM should continue in office. I think he is doing a great job… I support him 100 per cent.’

'We've got cake', joked Mr Ray, in a reference to the Prime Minister meeting with staff to celebrate his birthday party in the height of lockdown when indoor gatherings were banned

‘We’ve got cake’, joked Mr Ray, in a reference to the Prime Minister meeting with staff to celebrate his birthday party in the height of lockdown when indoor gatherings were banned

On her broadcast round elsewhere this morning, Ms Truss indicated that some of the contents of Sue Gray's report into the Partygate scandal might be held back for 'security' reasons

On her broadcast round elsewhere this morning, Ms Truss indicated that some of the contents of Sue Gray’s report into the Partygate scandal might be held back for ‘security’ reasons

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It comes as Mr Johnson faces a day of reckoning, with allies desperately mobilising to shore up his position and Jacob Rees-Mogg warning that MPs getting rid of him would almost certainly trigger a snap general election.

Ms Truss scorned this suggestion this morning, telling BBC Radio 4’s Today programme it was ‘complete hypothetical speculation’.

She also said Mr Johnson has her ‘100% support’ as the prime minister faces calls, including from some of his Conservative MPs, to resign over the ‘partygate’ revelations.

‘I believe the PM should continue in office, I think he’s doing a great job,’ she said. ‘He’s apologised and he’s admitted that mistakes were made.’

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Asked if she wants to one day lead the Conservative party, she replied: ‘I want the PM to continue in his job, I support him 100 percent.’

Boris Johnson (pictured running this morning) is facing the release of Sue Gray's report into alleged Downing Street lockdown breaches as soon as today

Boris Johnson (pictured running this morning) is facing the release of Sue Gray’s report into alleged Downing Street lockdown breaches as soon as today

The Foreign Secretary also discussed the ongoing crisis in Ukraine, vowing that Russia would face ‘severe sanctions’ if it invaded.

She told Sky: ‘We are already supplying support to Ukraine. We’re supplying defensive weapons. We’re providing economic support.

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‘We are urging Russia to desist from an incursion and we’re making it very clear that if they were to do that there would be severe economic cost to Russia – severe sanctions.’

On what these sanctions could look like, she said: ‘They would target individuals, they would target financial institutions and they would be co-ordinated with all of our allies across Europe, the United States and others.’

Asked if the Government would support individual sanctions against President Vladimir Putin, Ms Truss said she was not ‘ruling anything out’. 

 

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