Sophy Ridge speechless after Therese Coffey ignores Braverman speeding questions

Sophy Ridge left exasperated by Therese Coffey

Sophy Ridge was left speechless after a senior minister tried getting out of giving answers about Suella Braverman’s speeding fine by arguing she hadn’t spoken to the Home Secretary before the interview.

The Sky News presenter was driven to chuckling at Therese Coffey, adding: “I don’t really know what to say to be honest.”

Despite it being the biggest story of the day, Ms Coffey claimed she couldn’t add anything to the statements already given by the Home Office and Rishi Sunak, arguing she hadn’t spoken to Suella Braverman about the explosive claims.

Both the Sunday Times and Mail on Sunday revealed the Home Secretary may have asked her Home Office civil servants to help her avoid a speeding fine and points on her licence by arranging a private one-to-one driving awareness course.

It is alleged the request, which was eventually dropped by Mrs Braverman who decided to accept the points on her licence, could contravene the Ministerial code.

This morning, Environment Secretary Therese Coffey was asked about the story, however claimed she’d “only read the newspapers like your good self” and had nothing further to add to the story.

Ms Ridge changed tact, asking Ms Coffey if she has the Home Secretary’s phone number, and why she didn’t speak to Mrs Braverman prior to doing the interview when she knew it would come up.

Ms Coffey said: “There’s some speculation in the newspapers, I’m not going to get into Individual details”.

“As far as I’m aware, people closer messaged or whoever – the press – but candidly this is just a case of something that happened I guess over a year ago, I don’t know the details I’m only aware of what was in the newspaper”

She later said she only read the papers at around 7:20am, despite the story breaking at 5 o’clock yesterday evening.

The DEFRA Secretary added that she hadn’t called Suella Braverman to ascertain extra details because she doesn’t “make it my business to go around phoning people at twenty past seven in the morning when I’ve just read a bit of newspaper to look into this”.

Sophy Ridge got increasingly exasperated, blasting Ms Coffey: “Do you get why viewers might find it a bit frustrating that ministers can come on and say ‘look, I don’t know the details, I’ve got nothing to say on this because I just don’t know’, because it’s obvious we’re going to ask this question.”

“Do you just think it’s not a big deal then, you seem to be quite relaxed about it? It is a big deal isn’t it, she’s asking taxpayer-funded civil servants to get involved in her personal affairs.”

This morning Prime Minister Rishi Sunak failed to say whether he had full confidence in the Home Secretary.

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A No. 10 press officer later clarified that the PM does have confidence in Ms Braverman.

Answering questions at a G7 press conference in Japan, Mr Sunak said: “I think you can see first-hand what I have been doing over the last day or so but I understand that she’s expressed regret for speeding, accepted the penalty and paid the fine.”

When asked about the story by BBC political editor Chris Mason, Mr Sunak replied: “Did you have a question about the summit?”

Both the Labour Party and the LibDems have called for an investigation into the claims by the PM’s ethics advisor.

Downing Street is yet to say whether the PM will instruct Sir Laurie Magnus to launch such an inquiry.

Sir Laurie’s inquiry into Nadhim Zahawi’s tax affairs resulted in the Prime Minister sacking the former Chancellor.

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