Rishi Sunak denies he has links to former No.10 adviser Dominic Cummings as leadership race heats up

Rishi Sunak denies he has links to former No.10 adviser Dominic Cummings as leadership race heats up
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Aden-Jay Wood

By Aden-Jay Wood

Published: 11/07/2022

- 07:49

Updated: 14/02/2023

- 10:51

It comes after Nadine Dorries claimed Mr Cummings was backing the former chancellor in the Conservative Party leadership battle

Rishi Sunak has been forced to deny he has links to Boris Johnson’s former adviser Dominic Cummings.

On Friday, Mr Sunak announced his intention to run for Conservative Party leader following the resignation of Mr Johnson.

And as the leadership race continues to heat up, Mr Cummings has been making “poisonous” claims against some of the Prime Ministerial candidates including Liz Truss.

Culture Secretary Nadine Dorries has claimed Mr Cummings had been working with Mr Sunak for “quite a long time”.

FILE PHOTO: Britain's Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak hosts a news conference in the Downing Street Briefing Room in London, Britain February 3, 2022. Justin Tallis/Pool via REUTERS/File Photo
Rishi Sunak

File photo dated 26/9/2019 of the Prime Minister's former aide Dominic Cummings, who left Downing Street in November, who has published a screenshot purporting to show an exchange between himself and the Prime Minister. The image showed Mr Cummings criticising Health Secretary Matt Hancock over testing, to which a contact purporting to be the Prime Minister replied: %22Totally f****** hopeless.%22 Issue date: Wednesday June 16, 2021.
Dominic Cummings
Yui Mok

Ms Dorries told the Daily Mail: “People have to ask themselves the question: why is Cummings backing Rishi?

“The answer to that question is because Cummings believes he can control Rishi and sees a role for himself back in government, and that is quite terrifying.”

A campaign spokesman for Mr Sunak has since hit back at the claims, saying: “Mr Cummings and Rishi have not spoken since he left No.10 almost two years ago.”

While the paper also reported that there was “absolutely no involvement whatsoever” between Mr Sunak and Mr Cummings, adding that the former adviser would play “no role” should Mr Sunak win the leadership contest.

Their comments come after a leadership campaign source said: “Candidates should come clean about whether they are receiving any advice at all from Cummings, because it is obvious he is trying to insert himself into the campaign.

“I think he is poisoning the well of debate, and trying to turn this contest into something that it doesn’t need to be. This could be a completely clean and fair fight about Conservative values.

“Rishi Sunak’s campaign should come clean. Are they having any contact with Dom, do they welcome any contact, are they receiving any advice?,” they told the paper.

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