He wrote in his piece: “We made the wrong choice this summer about the path we should take. Plans to cut taxes targeted on the richest were a holiday from reality.
“A mini-budget that didn’t explain how spending plans would be paid for was an error. To put it mildly.”
His ruthless criticism of his former Cabinet colleague proved divisive on Twitter, with some users praising his honesty while others lambasted his “back-stabbing” and accused him of insulting the Conservative Party members who voted for Truss.
\u201c@GuidoFawkes Vindication comes from the electorate not Michael Gove. He\u2019s right to apologise for truss, she was a disaster and single handedly killed the brand of conservatism\u201d
Questioned on reports of the attack, which allegedly took place over the summer, he told Ridge: “I don’t know the full details of what security breach, if any, took place.
“What I do know is that the Government has very robust protocols in place in order to make sure that individuals are protected, but also that Government security and national security are protected as well.”
His response was, unsurprisingly, not reassuring to scores of Twitter users, who demanded to know more of the “details” he claimed to be ignorant of:
\u201cA massive domestic & international crisis of UK Govt threatening national security. And Michael Gove comes on Sunday TV & says: "I don't know the full details" repeatedly when asked by @SophyRidgeSky abt the phone hacking of Liz Truss. A scandalous response. #Ridge\u201d
Moving on (and giving Liz a bit of a break), what also got tongues furiously wagging was Gove’s defence of Braverman, who Sunak re-hired to one of the most important jobs in Government just six days after she was forced to resign over a security breach.
The Levelling Up Secretary described the MP – whose stance on immigration has earnt her the nickname “Cruella” – as a “first-rate, front-rank politician”.
Addressing her speedy return to Government, Gove told Ridge: “She acknowledged that a mistake had been made. She is working hard in order to ensure that our borders can be made more secure, and that policing is more effective.
“She’s a valued member of the Cabinet and someone whom I admire and like.”
Doubling-down on his charm offensive, he told the BBC’s Laura Kuenssberg that Braverman is “absolutely” a politician of integrity.
Kuenssberg challenged Gove over the Home Secretary’s claim that she immediately reported her mistake, showing him an email from Braverman asking: “Can you delete the message and ignore?”
He replied: “I’m sure there’d be all sorts of inferences that people can draw, but it would seem to me on the basis of the facts that I know, that would have been quite proper for the Home Secretary to have said to the recipient of something that was sent an error ‘please do delete and ignore it’. That is standard practice.”
Gove added the message was intended for another parliamentarian and “so it’s not as though it was being sent out into the ether to persons unknown”.
He continued: “I am satisfied, more than satisfied, that in resigning, accepting responsibility, apologising, and then in being assured by the Cabinet Secretary and the Prime Minister that Suella coming back into office was the right thing, that Suella is now in a position to do the work that she is dedicated to doing.”
Suffice it to say, plenty of viewers were decidedly not satisfied with his conclusion:
\u201cI have no problem with Suella Braverman being given a \u2018second chance\u2019 (pace Michael Gove). It\u2019s her being given the first chance that I object to.\u201d
— David Aaronovitch (@David Aaronovitch)
\u201cMichael Gove says Suella Braverman is \u201cabsolutely\u201d a politician of integrity. But isn\u2019t he the chap who betrayed Boris Johnson at the 11th hour, only to go on and serve in his cabinet?\u201d
Breaking out into a wry smile, he replied simply: "Yes."
\u201cMichael Gove says now he's back in Cabinet, he'll be seen less in nightclubs \ud83d\udd7a\n\n#Ridge: https://t.co/ZoMhCmTrtv\n\n\ud83d\udcfa Sky 501, Virgin 602, Freeview 233 and YouTube\u201d
— Sophy Ridge on Sunday & The Take (@Sophy Ridge on Sunday & The Take)
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