British opposition leader says he’ll resign if found to have broken lockdown rules

British Labour Party leader Keir Starmer says he’ll resign if he’s found to have broken lockdown rules, the BBC reported.

The move comes after a photo emerged of Starmer drinking beer and eating curry in the office of one of his fellow Labour Party members as she was holding a party last April.

The party was held during lockdown — a sensitive issue for because of the attacks on Tory Prime Minister Boris Johnson for also violating Britain’s strict lockdown rules.

Starmer — the leader of the opposition in Britain’s Parliament, who would become prime minister if his party takes Parliament in the next election — said Monday that he would step down if police found he violated the rules in place after their probe into the incident

The Labour leader insisted he had “always followed the rules” and that he didn’t break them because the photo was taken while he was “between work demands.”

The U.K.’s lockdown rules have an exemption for gatherings for “work purposes.”

He said his Tory opponents “didn’t believe it themselves” and were simply attempting “to get the public to believe all politicians are the same”.

“I’m here to say they are not – I believe in honor, integrity and the principle that those who make the laws should follow them,” he added.

“If the police decide to issue me with a fixed-penalty notice, I would of course do the right thing and step down.”

The investigation into the incident could last up to eight weeks.

Labour have made much hay over what’s known as “Partygate” — accusations Prime Minister Boris Johnson not only broke lockdown rules by attending a party for his birthday in 2020 but intentionally misleading lawmakers.

Johnson, his wife Carrie and Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak were fined £50, or $66, for violating rules by holding the party.

“It did not occur to me, then or subsequently, that a gathering in the Cabinet room just before a vital meeting on COVID strategy could amount to a breach of the rules,” Johnson said in April. “That was my mistake, and I apologize for it unreservedly.”

As the BBC noted: “Under government guidelines, ministers who knowingly mislead the House of Commons are expected to resign.”

Starmer called April’s events a “humiliating climb-down” which demonstrated Tories “know they can no longer defend the indefensible.”

“Boris Johnson has lost the trust of the public over parties held in Downing Street during lockdown,” Starmer said at the time. “Now it’s clear he has lost the confidence of his MPs.”

Now, Starmer faces his own test, with Tories saying the Labour leader has demonstrated “rank double standards.”

Culture Minister Chris Philp dismissed Karmer’s promise to resign, arguing he was attempting to “pressure the police into clearing him,” calling the move “deeply inappropriate.”