A FURIOUS Boris Johnson swore at Douglas Ross after the latter told him he ought to resign over Partygate, the Scottish Tory leader has revealed.

He told an audience Edinburgh Fringe there had been “rude words” from the Prime Minister, adding: “I would say he was angry.”

Mr Ross called for the Prime Minister to stand down over Covid rule-breaking in January this year, then infamously U-turned and backed him in March after Russia invaded Ukraine.

He then called for Mr Johnson to go a second time in June when Tory MPs forced a confidence vote in the PM, which he narrowly survived.

Speaking about his relationship with Mr Johnson at the Pleasance EICC, the Moray MP said he had “two particularly difficult phone calls with the Prime Minister”.

The first was when he resigned as a Scotland Office minister in May 2020 over the Dominic Cummings affair, when the PM’s top aide kept his job after leaving London during lockdown.

Mr Cummings also claimed he had driven to Barnard Castle to test his eyesight.

Mr Ross said: “I thought, as the second most senior UK minister in Scotland after the Secretary of State, I would be having to go on TV, on radio, and somehow defending Dominic Cummings driving for half an hour to test his eyesight.

“No one else had resigned at this point, and no one did.

“I had a discussion with the Prime Minister that night and it was actually ok. One of my kids was crying at that point, and the Prime Minister’s child was behind him was crying as well.

“We had more of a discussion about that. One of the last things he said to me was, ‘Douglas, don’t do this, no one erver personally benefits from resigning’.

“And I just kind of paused and said, ‘You resigned as Foreign Secretary and now you’re in Number 10, so there are some cases where resigning is actually quite good’.

“And then of course the second phone call I had was back in January, when I said I could no longer support his position.”

He said he had changed his position because of the war in Europe eclipsing Partygate.

Pressed for more details about his call with the PM, Mr Ross said: “It was a Wednesday afternoon, straight after PMQs, which is not a great time to be speaking to a Prime Minister.

“It is the point in th week when they are their most vulnerable. They’ve either just got through it or they’ve made a bit of a mess etc.

“He was in his office behind the Speaker’s chair. I was in the Scottish Parliament.

“In some ways that was probably easier, to do it over the phone rather than face to face.

“I was one of the first more senior members to call on the Prime Minister to resign. 

“He was not particularly pleased about that.

“We saw that from the reaction of his strongest supporters.”

Asked if Mr Johnson had been “genuinely angry” and if there had been shouting, Mr Ross said: “Yeah. I would say he was angry.

“One of his MPs was saying they no longer had confidence in him. I think it would be a difficult conversation to have for any party leader with your MPs is telling you that, particularly when you are the Prime Minister. That ratchets it up a notch.

“When you’re not only just saying you think you’re unsuitable to lead the party but lead the country.”

Asked jokingly by co-host Iain Dale whether Mr Johnson had said “What the f*** do you think you’re doing?”, Mr Ross did not deny there had been swearing.

He said: “I can’t, yeah, em”

Asked by co-host Jacqui Smith whether the classically educated PM had used any “rude Latin words”, Mr Ross said: “They were rude. They weren’t necessarily Latin from what I remember.”

Asked how he responded, Mr Ross said his work as a football referee came in handy.

“I always just try to dampen it down. You can’t react. I’d love to react to some of players that run up to and swear at me and say things, but you just have to remain calm.”

Mr Ross also spoke about Mr Johnson’s defenders turning on him after he called on him to go, most famously MP Jacob Rees-Mogg, who called the Scottish leader a “lightweight”.

He said: “It was on Newsnight and Kirsty Wark had an ‘Oooft!’ moment, and I thought this is clearly a line, they wanted to dampen down any potential dissent.

“I said he was entitled to his view. From someone who prides themself on being courteous to colleagues I think it was a surprise.

“But for me it was water off a duck’s back, it’s happened, and we move.”