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What is going on between Boris Johnson and the Westminster press pack?

My colleagues in the lobby are up in arms over a change to the regular briefings held by Johnson’s official spokesperson. It doesn’t sound like a big deal, but it’s a sign of the friction that exists between the prime minister and the press

John Rentoul
Sunday 05 January 2020 01:37 GMT
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Any attempt by No 10 to assert itself is likely to be resisted by journalists
Any attempt by No 10 to assert itself is likely to be resisted by journalists (Getty)

The government is at war with the journalists of the parliamentary lobby, again. My colleagues at Westminster are up in arms over a change to the regular briefings held by the prime minister’s official spokesperson – so what is going on?

The government has announced that, from tomorrow, James Slack, Boris Johnson’s official spokesperson, will hold his briefings in Downing Street instead of the House of Commons.

This doesn’t seem like a big deal, as it means journalists will have to take an extra 10 minutes to go across the road. But it is seen as part of the low-level friction between Johnson’s media operation and political journalists since his Conservative leadership campaign.

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