May 28, 2020 12.29 pm This story is over 19 months old

Lincoln MP defends travel advice to constituent

Mr McCartney’s predecessor said it merited further explanation

Lincoln’s MP Karl McCartney has said the full context of travel advice given to a constituent, which has recieved criticism online, was missing the “fullest” details.

In a post being shared across Facebook and Twitter, Lincoln resident Katrina Harris says she “asked our MP if I could take my four month old on a 250-mile journey to see my parents in Devon and this is his response.”

The email could have been a jibe related to the Dominic Cummings scandal, and whose actions the Conservative Lincoln MP defended earlier in the saga.

Mr McCartney’s email is then shown to say: “The government have advised people to use their common sense at this difficult time.

“If you believe you are acting in the best interests of your family, then do so.”

The post has garnered criticism online, including from the city’s ousted Labour MP Karen Lee, who said it merited “further explanation and a comment from Lincoln’s Member of Parliament”.

When contacted, Mr McCartney said he would not break confidentiality of private emails.

However, he added: “Suffice to say, the context which the constituent has supplied (in a Facebook post, rather than her original email) isn’t the fullest detail of her original email to me, and the overarching reason for why I replied as I did has not been included in her summary.

“We are amidst a global health crisis, and it is critical that we all continue to follow the advice given by the government and Public Health England.”

Mr McCartney’s auto-response to constituents also includes the line: “I would urge you all to please heed government advice on social distancing and self-isolation.”

Mr McCartney recently took to Twitter to defend the Prime Minister’s aide Dominic Cummings, who has been the subject of heated debate after he travelled 260 miles from his home to County Durham with his ill child and wife.

Mr Cummings has said he acted reasonably and legally in going to stay on his parents’ farm and made no apology for his actions.

Mr McCartney said he did not know  “Dominic C” personally, but that he was “not the devil”.

He said Mr Cummings had done his best and added “we are all human”.

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