Boris Johnson: American journalist under fire for saying prime minister being moved to ICU is 'funny'

Many Twitter users call out Ken Klippenstein, others back him, while some say it's possible to dislike the PM without wishing him to be in intensive care

Boris Johnson in intensive care: who runs the country if the PM is unfit

An American journalist has caused a storm on Twitter by saying that Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s hospitalisation for coronavirus and transfer to intensive care is “funny.”

In a tweet on Monday afternoon, Ken Klippenstein said: “Boris Johnson called for a bats**t plan that sought to let people get sick and could've killed millions; he bragged about coronavirus not stopping him from shaking people's hands.”

“If you can't understand why some people are gonna find this funny, I don't know what to tell you.”

The tweet drew instant criticism, with much of the reaction referring to both the unpleasant nature of suffering from Covid-19 to the point of needing to be moved to intensive care, and that Mr Johnson’s partner, Carrie Symonds, is pregnant.

“I don’t know man I’m a big advocate of yours I just don’t want anyone to die as they gasp for air. It’s just inhuman.”

“He has a partner who is pregnant. This could leave that child fatherless. There is nothing funny about this at all.”

“Father's battling for their lives in ICU is NOT funny you moron.”

Other users said that it is possible to dislike Mr Johnson, but not want to put him in intensive care.

Mr Klippenstein posted other tweets, doubling down on his point: “THIS WAS LITERALLY BORIS' JOHNSON'S ‘HERD IMMUNITY’ PLAN WHICH SOUGHT TO LET EVERYONE INCLUDING THE OLD AND INFIRM GET SICK.”

He also retweeted a video of Mr Johnson saying on 3 March that he shook hands with everyone including coronavirus patients on a visit to a hospital.

Some Twitter users agreed with Mr Klippenstein, while others said that Mr Johnson’s condition was ironic, not humorous — others said it was not funny, but that it was karma.

Most succinct was the user who said: “Sometimes it’s better to just say nothing.”

The prime minister was moved to intensive care after his coronavirus symptoms worsened, just hours after Downing Street insisted he was in good spirits and in control of the government's response to the escalating crisis. He is understood to be conscious and was moved as a precaution, in case he requires ventilation to aid his recovery.

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