UK Politics

Reaction to Andrew Mitchell's resignation

Andrew Mitchell
Image caption Mr Mitchell said "damaging publicity" meant he could no longer do his job

Andrew Mitchell has quit as government chief whip a month after over an argument with police officers in Downing Street.

He had faced mounting pressure over the incident in which he swore at an officer who said he could not take his bike through the main gate.

Here is some reaction to the MP for Sutton Coldfield's decision.

Michael Gove, Education Minister

"He's a man of honour and he's done so [resigned] because he recognises that other people were damaged, that the government was damaged, as a result of his staying in office and he felt that the right thing to do was to remove himself from the picture.

"I also think it's appropriate to say that Andrew recognised that the words that he uttered were utterly unacceptable. It was a moment of exasperation, any of us, any of us can be guilty of a moment of weakness."

Paul McKeever, Police Federation of England and Wales chairman

"It is not good to see anyone fall from public office but the decision by the prime minister to accept Andrew Mitchell's resignation seemed almost inevitable.

"Andrew Mitchell has apologised to our Metropolitan Police colleague and our colleague has accepted the apology. We hope this matter is now closed."

Yvette Cooper, shadow home secretary

"This is a sensible decision by Andrew Mitchell. It is very unfortunate that David Cameron allowed this to drag on so long rather than investigate and resolve it at the start.

"Letting it carry on like this sent a very bad signal to the police and public servants across the country about the government's attitude."

Jacob Rees-Mogg, Conservative MP

"This is hugely exaggerated, that somebody lost his temper. Frankly, big deal. All sorts of people lose their temper in their daily lives, it's part of human nature.

"To blow this up into a resignation issue I think has been very unfortunate and actually trivialises politics when there are many important things going on."

Mary Creagh, Shadow Environment Secretary

"It's about the nature and competence of this government. These damaging rows are piling up one after the other.

"And the whole issue of entitlement, of a government that's out of touch, of a budget that started with a tax break for millionaires, one rule for those at the top, another rule for the little people at the bottom."

Stuart Hinton, Warwickshire Police Federation

"This is a simple honesty and integrity issue. And we wanted to get to the bottom of who said what and unfortunately, he didn't tell us exactly what he did say and he still hasn't said what he did say.

"And when you've got a senior government official questioning police records and the veracity of those records, that's a very serious matter and has wider implications for the service as a whole."

Mark Pritchard, Conservative MP

"I don't think it was the lack of support with the Parliamentary party. I think it was the ongoing and incessant beating of the government with a big stick by the Police Federation who clearly have an axe to grind over a whole range of government policies they're not happy.

"Also the fact that Labour were, understandably I suppose, they're the opposition, piling on the pressure, for purely political reasons."