Trevor Phillips Leaves Minister Squirming As He Suggests Rishi Sunak Has A Rather Crucial Flaw

Trevor Phillips attacked Rishi Sunak's political skills in a robust interview with minister Claire Coutinho
Trevor Phillips attacked Rishi Sunak's political skills in a robust interview with minister Claire Coutinho Sky News

Trevor Phillips tore into Rishi Sunak on Sunday and questioned if the prime minister was just not “very good at politics” during a toe-curling interview.

Speaking to the energy security and net zero secretary Claire Coutinho on Sky News, the presenter began by ripping into the Conservatives’ chances at the next general election.

He said: “Why is it that for a year, the poll gap with Labour hasn’t moved, Reform UK has eaten into your vote and you’re now down in some polls below 20%?”

Labour extended its lead over the Tories in the polls yet again this week, reaching 45% compared to the Conservatives’ lacklustre 19%.

Coutinho replied: “Look, the country has been through a really difficult time, people have had a cost of living crisis thanks to Putin’s war in Ukraine and a pandemic.”

She said the government were “rebuilding the country” and making sure “we’ve got a growing economy” which gives money back to the public.

Phillips cut in: “We’re actually flat, almost a recession.”

The economy also shrank in the final two quarters of 2023, according to the latest data from the Office for National Statistics. 

The minister hit back: “Actually, we were meant to go into a deep recession but the actions of the prime minister, the steps he’s taken to protect the economy, have shielded us from that.

“You look at what’s happening in other countries, Trevor, actually, other countries are faring quite badly.”

Phillip said: “Let me just put an alternative explanation for this, and this is to do with the prime minister himself.

“Everyone agrees that he has virtues one might say were absent in his immediate predecessors; intellectually capable, financially [and] tech-literate, personally moral.

“He could have been remembered as the chancellor who got us through Covid.

“It looks now as though he’ll be the prime minister who took the Tories into the wilderness.

“Is the problem that you’ve got that your leader just isn’t very good at politics?”

Coutinho ignored that direct question, and instead went on the attack.

She said: “Actually I think what’s happening at the moment is you don’t see people being very attracted to the Labour party, there’s an awful lot of people who are in the don’t know column.”

“No, I’m asking about your leader, not Labour’s. I’ll deal with them separately. What about your leader?” Phillips said.

But, the minister just said the government needs to get across the positive message about what it has done for the country while pointing out “the faults of the Labour party.”