Boris Johnson says he acted with ‘full propriety’ as he is grilled about Jennifer Arcuri row

Viewers accuse the BBC’s Andrew Marr of letting Boris Johnson ‘off the hook’ by failing to ask him about claims he had a ‘sexual relationship’ with American ex-model Jennifer Arcuri who received thousands of pounds of taxpayers’ money

  • PM insisted ‘there was no interest to declare’ over his business dealings 
  • Reports claim Ms Arcuri told friends she was in relationship with then mayor
  • Mr Johnson said today: ‘Everything was done with full propriety’ 
  • US journalist David Enrich said he spoke to friends who confirmed the affair
  • Conservative activist also said Ms Arcuri spoke of relationship in 2015 election 
  • PM is dogged by allegations he provided benefits to her company as Mayor

Boris Johnson escaped serious questioning today over whether he had a sexual relationship with an American ex-model who received thousands of pounds of taxpayers money.

The Prime Minister insisted he had behaved with ‘full propriety’ towards Jennifer Arcuri when he was mayor of London when he was interviewed by the BBC this morning. 

But the brief questioning he received on the subject on the Andrew Marr Show focused entirely on his business relationship with the American entrepreneur.

Veteran interviewer Mr Marr did not ask about Sunday newspaper allegations that married Mr Johnson had a physical relationship with Ms Arcuri during his time running the capital.

Viewers took to Twitter to question why the questions faced by the Prime Minister had not been harder, with one, Matt Bell, saying: ‘Boris nervously trying to get away from the Arcuri question. Why did #Marr let him off the hook so easily?’

Another, Teresa Smith, added: ‘Andrew Marr, who interrogated Gordon Brown about whether he was taking antidepressants, is too coy to ask Boris Johnson whether he had sex with Arcuri.’

It came after it was claimed Ms Arcuri told friends she was having a sexual relationship with the politician during his time in charge of the capital. 

Appearing on the BBC’s Marr Show Mr Johnson said: ‘Everything was done in accordance with the code (of conduct) … everything was done with full propriety’

American businesswoman and ex-model Jennifer Arcuri (right) told friends she was having a sexual affair with Boris Johnson, it has been claimed

American businesswoman and ex-model Jennifer Arcuri (right) told friends she was having a sexual affair with Boris Johnson, it has been claimed

Hair-raising allegations: Mr Johnson is accused of having an affair with Ms Arcuri while he was mayor of London and helping her business. He denied any wrongdoing on the Marr Show (pictured)

Hair-raising allegations: Mr Johnson is accused of having an affair with Ms Arcuri while he was mayor of London and helping her business. He denied any wrongdoing on the Marr Show (pictured)

Among those who Ms Arcuri confided in were university classmates and a Conservative Party activist who said: ‘She told me they were sleeping together,’ according to the Sunday Times

The paper claimed she told four friends that the pair had been engaged in an affair during his time in City Hall.  

The Prime Minister insisted ‘there was no interest to declare’ over his business dealings with the entrepreneur while he was mayor of London.

Appearing on the BBC’s Marr Show Mr Johnson said: ‘Everything was done in accordance with the code (of conduct) … everything was done with full propriety.’

He added: ‘There was no interest to declare. I’m very very proud of everything that we did and certainly everything I did as mayor of London.’   

MR Johnson arriving to film the Marr Show this morning. He said: 'I'm very very proud of everything that we did and certainly everything I did as mayor of London'

MR Johnson arriving to film the Marr Show this morning. He said: ‘I’m very very proud of everything that we did and certainly everything I did as mayor of London’

The Prime Minister arrived in in Manchester with girlfriend Carrie Symonds on Saturday evening, exuding an air or calm as the couple linked arms

The Prime Minister arrived in in Manchester with girlfriend Carrie Symonds on Saturday evening, exuding an air or calm as the couple linked arms

Mr Johnson put on a show of unity with partner Carrie Symonds last night as he arrived at the Conservative Party Conference in Manchester. 

Boris Johnson could win a 100-strong majority at snap general election if he strikes a pact with the Brexit Party, Nigel Farage claims 

Boris Johnson could get a 100-seat majority if he does a snap election pact with the Brexit Party, Nigel Farage claimed today.

Mr Farage renewed his appeal for the PM to join forces – but insisted it could only happen if the Tories committed to a ‘clean break’ from the EU.

He pointed out that the Brexit Party posted its ‘biggest scores’ in European elections in traditional Labour heartlands, suggesting Mr Johnson should give him a clear run.  

In return the MEP said he would urge Labour Leave supporters to ‘hold their nose’ and back the Conservatives, arguing that a third might switch sides if he encouraged them.  

The overtures came in an interview with Sky News’ Sophy Ridge as the Tory conference kicks off in Manchester today.

But they was dashed by Mr Johnson a short time later. In an interview with the BBC he was asked if he would do a deal with Mr Farage and he replied: ‘No.’ 

The Prime Minister has been hit by allegations he improperly provided benefits to the entrepreneur’s company during his period as London Mayor. On Friday, he was referred to the police complaints body to assess whether he should face a criminal investigation over his links with Ms Arcuri.

But as he continues to evade questions surrounding his friendship with Ms Arcuri, a US reporter who interviewed the entrepreneur has given a bombshell interview detailing her close friendship with Mr Johnson.

David Enrich, the financial editor of the New York Times, said that Ms Arcuri had confided to close university peers she was sleeping with Mr Johnson.

He said: ‘Two friends from her business class said they had been told by Arcuri that she was sleeping with Boris. 

In 2013, Mr Enrich spoke to the businesswoman and several of her tight-knit friendship group for an article he was writing. 

Referring to notes which he has kept from those conversations, he alleges that Ms Arcuri said that Mr Johnson warned her to steer clear of speaking to the press.

And Mr Enrich said that her classmates at London’s Hult International Business School repeatedly stated that the entrepreneur had confided to them of her affair with Mr Johnson.

His account was said by the Sunday Times to corroborate that of other sources who had spoken to Ms Arcuri. 

His reports are backed up by the account of a Conservative Party activist who alleges that Ms Arcuri told him during the 2015 general election campaign of her sexual relationship with the now Premier. 

Mr Johnson's relationship with Ms Arcuri (pictured) has caused him to become the subject of a police investigation

Mr Johnson’s relationship with Ms Arcuri (pictured) has caused him to become the subject of a police investigation

‘She told me they were sleeping together,’ said this grassroots campaigner, who also claimed that the ex-model would not deny the affair when pressed. 

These fresh revelations of the prime minister’s links to Ms Arcuri came on the eve of his party conference where he will hope to shake off a tough week in Westminster.

He arrived in Manchester with girlfriend Carrie Symonds on Saturday evening, exuding an air or calm as the couple linked arms.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock dismissed the claims as a ‘squall’ this morning.

Asked on Sky News’s Sophy Ridge on Sunday programme if the Prime Minister had questions to answer, Mr Hancock replied: ‘No.’

He went on: ‘My understanding is that there is an investigation. Any monies involved went through proper due process. This was a long time ago.

‘Of course, in politics, there is always squalls and there are always debates about individuals.’

But these latest claims heap pressure on the embattled Tory leader who is staring down the barrel of four investigations into his links with Ms Arcuri.

The Greater London Authority (GLA) said its monitoring officer had recorded a ‘conduct matter’ against Mr Johnson over allegations Ms Arcuri received favourable treatment because of her friendship with him while he was Mayor of London.

The Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) will now consider whether there are grounds to investigate the Prime Minister for the criminal offence of misconduct in public office.

Journalist accuses PM of squeezing her inner thigh in 1999

Boris Johnson and Charlotte Edwardes

Boris Johnson and Charlotte Edwardes

Boris Johnson squeezed a journalist’s thigh at a private lunch with such force it made her jerk bolt upright, it was claimed last night.

Charlotte Edwardes said that in 1999 the prime minister – then the editor of the Spectator magazine – grabbed a chunk of her flesh from her upper leg.

And the columnist said that she was not the only female guest to be touched inappropriately by Mr Johnson that night.

Describing the lunch in Style magazine, Edwardes wrote: ‘Under the table I feel Johnson’s hand on my thigh.

‘He gives it a squeeze. His hand is high up my leg and he has enough flesh beneath his fingers to make me sit suddenly upright.’

After the lunch thrown by the Spectator at their then London office, Edwardes said she confided about Mr Johnson’s wandering hands to another woman, who replied: ‘Oh God, he did exactly the same to me.’ 

Downing Street did not wish to comment. 

A Downing Street spokesperson refused MailOnline’s request for comment. 

The GLA statement, denounced by Downing Street as a ‘nakedly political put-up job’ on the eve of the Tory Party conference, came after details of Ms Arcuri’s links to Mr Johnson were first highlighted in the Sunday Times last week. 

The newspaper reported that Ms Arcuri was given £126,000 in public money and privileged access to three foreign trade missions led by Mr Johnson while he was mayor.

Mr Johnson has consistently denied any wrongdoing in relation to his links with Ms Arcuri.

The latest allegations of infidelity follow a string of well-publicised stories involving Mr Johnson’s private life, some of which plagued his 25-year marriage to second wife Marina Wheeler.

In 2004 he was sacked from the Tory frontbench over a reported affair with journalist and colleague at the Spectator Petronella Wyatt.

He described claims about the relationship as ‘an inverted pyramid of piffle’ at the time.

Affair claims reared their head again in 2006 when it was reported that the married father-of-four had been romancing Anna Fazackerley of the Times Higher Education Supplement.

The Appeal Court ruled in 2013 that the public had a right to know that he had fathered a daughter during another adulterous liaison with another woman, Helen Macintyre, while mayor of London in 2009.

Despite surviving years of turmoil, Mr Johnson and his lawyer wife separated and began divorce proceedings in 2018 and he is now living at Downing Street with former Tory Party worker Carrie Symonds, 31. 

Last night, journalist Charlotte Edwardes accused the Prime Minister of squeezing her thigh at a private lunch when in 1999 when he was editor of the Spectator.

She wrote: ‘Under the table I feel Johnson’s hand on my thigh.

‘He gives it a squeeze. His hand is high up my leg and he has enough flesh beneath his fingers to make me sit suddenly upright.’ 

‘I am being a model of restraint’: Defiant Boris Johnson dismisses fury over his ‘surrender’ jibes at Remainer MPs as he kicks off Tory conference amid bitter standoff over rebel law against No Deal

Boris Johnson today rejected criticism over his ‘surrender’ jibe at Remainer MPs today – saying he must be allowed to speak plainly.

The Prime Minister shrugged off claims he has been whipping up anti-establishment anger as he kicked off the Tory conference in Manchester. 

He admitted there were real threats to politicians from extreme elements in society.

But he said it was ‘entirely legitimate’ to use ‘military metaphors’ such as the ‘Surrender Act’ to describe a rebel law designed to block No Deal. 

Mr Johnson gave a strong indication that he will not resign even if he cannot keep his ‘do or die’ vow to get Brexit by October 31.

However, he refused to say whether he would be willing to declare a state of emergency to bypass the legislation. Asked if he could get round the Benn Act, he said: ‘Of course we can.’ 

‘The best way to end this is to get Brexit done,’ he told the BBC’s Andrew Marr show. 

Mr Johnson was pushed on whether he regretted branding concerns about death threats ‘humbug’ in the Commons last week. 

‘I am being a model of restraint,’ he said. However, the premier did say he regretted if there was a ‘misunderstanding’ about what part of the question from Labour’s Paula Sheriff he had been calling ‘humbug’.

The comments came amid claims Mr Johnson is ‘whipping up’ Brexit riots so he can declare a state of emergency and force No Deal on October 31.

Boris Johnson (pictured on the BBC's Andrew Marr show today) shrugged off claims he has been whipping up anti-establishment anger as he kicked off Tory conference in Manchester

Boris Johnson (pictured on the BBC’s Andrew Marr show today) shrugged off claims he has been whipping up anti-establishment anger as he kicked off Tory conference in Manchester

Mr Johnson was pushed on whether he regretted branding concerns about death threats 'humbug' in the Commons last week

Mr Johnson was pushed on whether he regretted branding concerns about death threats ‘humbug’ in the Commons last week

Labour’s Keir Starmer warned that the PM wants to use the extreme tactic to flout a rebel law obliging him to beg the EU for a delay.

Mr Johnson has insisted he will abide by the law – but said he will never request an extension to the Halloween departure date.  

In a sign of the deep divisions in society, a poll today suggests nearly half the public say Mr Johnson should go to prison if he breaks the law. 

Tories turning Trumpish under Boris Johnson, says ex-minister David Gauke 

Former Tory Cabinet minister David Gauke blasted the politics of the party under Boris Johnson,saying it was like Donald Trump’s control of the Republicans in the United States.

The ex-justice secretary, who was stripped of the party whip after voting to block a No Deal Brexit, said the Tories had become a party that worked to ‘divide the country’ using coarse language.

He urged the party to use its conference in Manchester to become a party that brings the party together.

‘It does remind me of the way that Donald Trump is now running the Republican Party in the US. That is a disappointing state of affairs to put it mildly,’ He told Sky’s Ridge on Sunday.

‘I don’t believe that is right for the Conservative Party, I don’t believe it is right for the country.

‘And I hope that we see a change of direction in the course of the next few days at the conservative party conference.’

But the Tories are also 11 points ahead of Labour on general election voting intention, and No10 believes Mr Johnson’s tough message is cutting through. 

Mr Johnson told the Marr show: ‘I think what most people in this country would agree is that Brexit discussion has been going on for far too long and it is true that tempers on both sides have now become inflamed…

‘The best way to end this is to get Brexit done on October 31st and move the country forwards.’

Mr Johnson claimed the best thing for people’s ‘psychological health’ would be to deliver Brexit.

‘The best thing for the country and for people’s overall psychological health would be to get Brexit done,’ he told Marr.

‘It’s not just I who thinks that – if you look at where the public is, whether they voted Leave or Remain – they really think it’s up to Parliament now to get this thing over the line.’

The Prime Minister suggested that his use of the word ‘humbug’ in response to Paula Sherriff may have been a misunderstanding.

‘My use of the word humbug was in the context of people trying to prevent me – us – from using the word ”surrender”,’ he told the BBC.

Andrew Marr said Ms Sheriff – who claimed people quoted the Prime Minister’s words in death threats to MPs – was talking about something ‘very specific’.

Mr Johnson said: ‘In that case, that was a total misunderstanding and that was wrong.’

He added: ‘I can certainly say sorry for the misunderstanding, but my intention was to refuse to be crowded out from using the word ‘surrender’ to describe the Surrender Act.’ 

One minister warned last week that there would be violent unrest if the government does not follow through on Brexit.  

Former Tory Cabinet minister David Gauke blasted the politics of the party under Mr Johnson,saying it was like Donald Trump’s control of the Republicans in the United States.

The ex-justice secretary, who was stripped of the party whip after voting to block a No Deal Brexit, said the Tories had become a party that worked to ‘divide the country’ using coarse language.

How could the state of emergency ploy work? 

Remainers increasingly fear the government will take drastic action to sidestep the law obliging Boris Johnson to seek a Brexit extension.  

One idea being floated involves invoking the Civil Contingencies Act 2004, which grants ministers powers temporarily in a crisis. 

The government would declare an emergency, then get the privy council to suspend the Benn Act – allowing the UK to leave on the schedule date of October 31. 

However, even if the tactic was tried, it appears unlikely to survive scrutiny by the courts.

The government would need to satisfy judges that there is a genuine emergency – rather than an attempt to dodge the law. 

The Supreme Court has already indicated its willingness to intervene by ruling the PM’s attempt to prorogue was Parliament illegal.   

He urged the party to use its conference in Manchester to become a party that brings the party together. 

‘It does remind me of the way that Donald Trump is now running the Republican Party in the US. That is a disappointing state of affairs to put it mildly,’ He told Sky’s Ridge on Sunday.

‘I don’t believe that is right for the Conservative Party, I don’t believe it is right for the country.

‘And I hope that we see a change of direction in the course of the next few days at the conservative party conference.’

Remainers increasingly fear Mr Johnson will take drastic action to sidestep the law obliging him to seek a delay.  

One idea being floated involves invoking the Civil Contingencies Act 2004, which grants ministers powers temporarily in a crisis. 

The government would declare an emergency, then get the privy council to suspend the Benn Act – allowing the UK to leave on the schedule date of October 31.  

Interviewed in the Observer today, Sir Keir said: ‘Whipping up the idea of riots or even deaths if we do not leave the EU on 31 October is the height of irresponsibility. 

‘But it is also pretty obviously being orchestrated. 

‘If this is part of a government plan to misuse powers under emergency legislation, I can assure the PM we will defeat him in court and in parliament.’        

The legislation passed by Parliament earlier this month orders Mr Johnson to ask the EU for more time if no agreement has been reached by October 19. 

No10 chief Dominic Cummings fuelled Remainer paranoia last week by insisting there are ‘loopholes’ in the rebel law. 

Mr Cummings told Sky News: ‘There are obviously loopholes here, because Remain lawyers are all babbling away on Twitter about the loopholes, so they say themselves that there are loopholes.’  

Sir John Major warned that Mr Johnson could use ‘political chicanery’ to try to force No Deal.

The former PM said he feared the powers of the privy council could be abused to suspend a Remainer rebel law designed to stop the UK crashing out. 

In a speech to the Centre for European Reform, Sir John suggested the government could try to bypass the Benn Act by issuing an executive Order in Council.

That does not require the permission of the Queen, and could potentially suspend the law until after October 31.

‘I should warn the Prime Minister that – if this route is taken – it will be in flagrant defiance of Parliament and utterly disrespectful to the Supreme Court,’ Sir John said.

‘It would be a piece of political chicanery that no-one should ever forgive or forget.’ 

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

Distinct Today is a news media company, focused on the intersection between hyper-relevant content and digital innovation. Distinct Today curates editorial news content, experiences, and events across multiple platforms including email, mobile, online and offline. Distinct Today is headquartered in Houston, Texas. The company is privately held. Distinct Today targets an affluent, college-educated audience.