Matt Hancock: Health Secretary is putting Prime Minister Boris Johnson at risk

DrIt goes into the water until it breaks. That saying will be remembered by all who look at the chaos left by the resignation of British Health Secretary Matt Hancock, 42, over the weekend. The focus is on the minister’s extramarital relationship.

With a picture of the passionate embrace of his girlfriend and colleague Gina Coladangelo, 43, in his cabinet, Hancock was on the front page of The Sun on Friday, thus becoming the number one topic of conversation in the nation.

Extramarital affair? Under Prime Minister Boris Johnson, the response to this has actually been a mockery. Anyone with a rank and name in the “serial adulterer” locker, as an Observer commentator Johnson put it yesterday, can look comfortable in the eye of potential breaches of the Cabinet’s rules of decency.

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What could threaten as a result, when the moral standard in public office at the highest level of government appears to be hollowed out and the culture of laissez-faire rules asking only how competent — not: how moral — the ruling class? Assess? Johnson and his staff got away with this, despite some serious mistakes in the fight against the Covid pandemic, for which Hancock was often responsible. This is mainly due to the impressive success of the vaccination campaign, which points to something like freedom from a nationalist downturn.

came through. so far. The end of success in the race for public opinion was reached when the health minister himself got into the mill of contradictions and undermined, if not crushed, his credibility as the supreme guardian of the virus-fighting requirements to be followed.

On the 6th of May this year, the aforementioned photo was taken with a secret camera in the smoke detector in the Ministerial Office; No one knows how the camera got there, nor how the photo was taken on the “Sun”.

May 6 – That was a time when strict distance requirements were still prevalent for anyone not belonging to a close circle of a cohabiting family, hugs were forbidden. Hancock and Mrs. Coladangelo are married, and each has three children in supposedly healthy families.

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The minister was considered the “main hardliner” of health requirements. He was tireless in his demand for patriotic discipline, and had no trace of condoning violations of the same. When he said Dr. Catherine Calderwood, Scotland’s chief medical officer, was arrested on a trip to visit relatives in April and was the first to call for her to resign.

When he said Dr. Neil Ferguson, the chief adviser to the Johnson administration in the first shutdown last year, resigned to visit his mistress, and pointed out to Hancock that Ferguson had done the right thing; The police should also pay attention to the details of this lack of discipline.

Millions of citizens obeyed the conditions: relatives were not allowed to visit each other or console the sick in the homes, deaths were often to the exclusion of relatives, funerals were held with a small number of participants, weddings were no less, and above all the perpetual abstinence of the minister Who told people to encourage and praise victims when they put their own needs aside in the hope of salvation.

Yes, singles should be careful, he recently declared, to enter into new partnerships during the pandemic. And now the French kiss in a fierce embrace. It seems that the minister does not have to worry about the rules that he himself has imposed on others.

A broken jar fell on the sinner, crushing Johnson’s original instinct to hold on to his obedience. The latter must have speculated precisely about this: it would not be easy for this prime minister to dismiss him for a moral violation. Although Johnson has called Hancock a “hopeless case” multiple times, according to a statement from his chief adviser, Dominic Cummings, who was shot. But here there was extreme hypocrisy.

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Double standards are actually unknown in British class society, but the variety of standards that Hancock apparently practiced across society is like shocking. Amazed commentators question whether Britain is lightly dismissing the importance of the personal in politics, poisoning political culture as a whole.

Insightful questions arise. Was Ms Coladangalo, the daughter of a pharmaceutical businessman from Italy, appointed as Hancock’s advisor last fall, circumventing normal screening practices? She is married to a multi-million dollar businessman who runs chains of so-called lifestyle stores, which she oversees on the economy. They tend to have less prior education through informational advice on health issues.

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Was she likable to Hancock when she was hired as a paid advisor to the ministry? How did you get permission to access all addresses in Westminster? And her brother who trades medical equipment with a multi-million dollar contract from the National Health Service? Does Johnson’s informal governance make the Cabinet vulnerable to the machinations of corruption?

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It was also announced yesterday that Hancock often used his private email to run his department’s business, so that investigators in public channels did not get a proper overview of all stages of his decisions in the context of the Covid crisis.

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These are professional failures that further taint the bigger picture of the Johnson administration. It raises public awareness of the moral shortcomings of Johnson’s regiment, which in the long run could reduce the political weight the prime minister still wields.

Matt Hancock and Mrs. Coladangelo, who have known each other since their undergraduate days at Oxford, have since left their families to move in together.

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