Labour says Thérèse Coffey ‘not fit’ to be DWP Secretary as top Tory suggests Gower candidate should step down
The Labour Party has said Thérèse Coffey is not fit to be DWP Secretary after she told LBC that she would vote for the Conservative candidate in Gower who wrote that people on Benefits Street needed “putting down”.
Asked whether she would vote for Francesca O’Brien, Coffey replied: “Yes, I absolutely would.”
Speaking on Politics Live, columnist and senior Conservative Daniel Finkelstein said O’Brien should “consider her position”.
Laura Pidcock MP, Labour’s Shadow Secretary of State for Employment Rights, said:
“Thérèse Coffey is not fit to be DWP Secretary and the Conservative candidate for Gower is not fit to be an MP.
“It is shocking that the Conservatives’ benefits chief has endorsed someone who would talk about people on social security in such a disgusting way. This is the person in charge of the roll-out of Universal Credit.
“The Tories’ cruel benefits regime has pushed families and children into poverty. And it is no wonder, when Boris Johnson’s party has such contempt for the less well off.”
Note to Editors:
- Transcript of Thérèse Coffey speaking to Nick Ferrari on LBC this morning:
NF: Why is she still representing the Conservative Party?
TC: Well I understand she said it about five and a half years ago, she’s apologised for those comments, and it’s up to the voters in Gower who they want to be her MP?
NF: Would you vote for her?
TC: In the next election? Yes I absolutely would.
NF: Oh good Lord.
TC: Francesca is somebody…
NF: Somebody who wants to put down those on… On the one hand, Thérèse Coffey, I’m hearing how you and your colleagues are doing all you can for these folk, on the other hand you’d vote for someone who not that long ago said they need putting down.
- Francesca O’Brien, Conservative Parliamentary candidate in Gower, wrote on social media that she believed people on the reality TV show Benefits Street needed “putting down”. https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2019/nov/03/tory-candidate-francesca-obrien-wrote-people-benefits-street-should-be-put-down