‘I’m very keen on bunnies’: Boris Johnson’s father Stanley defends rabbits after PM mocks climate activists

Jane Dalton
·2-min read
Boris Johnson, who used a rabbit at a school visit in 2019 election campaigning, derided ‘bunny-huggers' (Getty Images)
Boris Johnson, who used a rabbit at a school visit in 2019 election campaigning, derided ‘bunny-huggers' (Getty Images)

The prime minister’s father says he is “very keen on bunnies” and that “bunny-hugging” is an affectionate term, after Boris Johnson used the phrase to take a swipe at environmental idealists.

At a virtual summit over action to curb rising greenhouse gases and sea levels, the PM told world leaders: “It’s vital for all of us to show that this is not all about some expensive, politically correct, green act of bunny-hugging, or however you want to put it. There’s nothing wrong with bunny hugging but you know what I’m driving at.”

His derision for environmental campaigners prompted a backlash, and Greta Thunberg changed her social media profile to read “bunny hugger”.

Boris Johnson’s father Stanley, a long-time eco campaigner, when asked on LBC whether the term was offensive, said: “I’m very keen on bunnies so when I sit here in Exmoor looking out of my window, I can see – well, there used to be thousands of them before myxomatosis dealt with that – so yes I think bunny-hugging is a good term.”

He said his son had made the remark as an aside.

On whether it’s possible to be green and a Conservative, Stanley Johnson said: “I don’t think I’d mind being seen as a greenie. I’m not sure I’m keen on being pc.”

He added: “I think we’re witnessing quite a sea change in Conservative policy and this particular organisation I’m the ambassador of, the Conservative Environmental Network, has a large number of MPs signed up to us.”

To view this content, you'll need to update your privacy settings.
Please click here to do so.

Read More

Tougher plan for North Sea oil and gas drilling crucial to UK’s leadership hopes, says chief climate adviser

Extinction Rebellion activists dump fake coal outside Lloyd’s of London in fossil fuel protest

Earth Day 2021: The ‘revenge of nature’ in fiction, from Day of the Triffids to Godzilla and Swamp Thing