Rishi Sunak ‘comfortable’ with Dominic Raab keeping job despite bullying allegations
Rishi Sunak has admitted his first 100 days in No 10 have been “challenging” while being interrogated by broadcasting heavyweight Piers Morgan.
The TalkTV host is grilling the prime minister on a range of issues, from mounting Tory sleaze claims and the winter crisis in the NHS, to growing unrest in the public sector and deepening cost of living fears.
Mr Sunak said he stood for the premiership “out of a sense of duty” and had assumed his time in front-line politics had ended when he resigned as Boris Johnson’s chancellor. He then chose to replace Liz Truss due to feeling he was “the best person to make a difference at that moment.”
The PM is also under pressure to say exactly what he knew and when about Dominic Raab’s conduct, as his deputy PM faces an investigation into bullying allegations.
It comes after Remain campaigner Gina Miller claimed, in an article written for The Independent, that Mr Raab had launched an “abusive attack” on her – calling her “stupid” and “naive” during an “aggressive” encounter at the BBC in 2016.
Sunak: I’d love to give nurses a pay rise – but we can’t right now
Rishi Sunak has said he would love to give nurses a “massive” pay rise – but insisted the money needs to be prioritised on other areas.
NHS staff were subjected to a pay freeze during Covid, he said, but said: “I would love to give nurses a massive pay rise – who wouldn’t? It would make my life easier.”
In an interview on his first 100 days in office, he said: “It’s about choices.” A record sum was going into the NHS but more doctors and nurses and equipment were needed, he said.
Emily Atkinson2 February 2023 21:25
Sunak promises to publish tax return ‘shortly’
Rishi Sunak said he will release his tax returns “shortly” as he battles to recover from having to sack Nadhim Zahawi as Tory party chairman over his financial affairs.
In an interview with Piers Morgan for TalkTV, the prime minister said: “They will be published shortly. As you know the tax filing deadline was just a few days ago. So that’s why.
“So we do the tax-filing deadlines just passed, so they’re just being prepared and they will be released shortly.”
Emily Atkinson2 February 2023 21:10
Watch: Rishi Sunak ‘comfortable’ with Dominic Raab keeping job despite bullying
Emily Atkinson2 February 2023 20:54
Rishi Sunak refused to rise to Piers Morgan’s prying questions about the jet-setting diplomacy of his predecessor Boris Johnson.
Asked if he was troubled by Mr Johnson’s visits to Ukraine and calls for more military aid, Mr Sunak insisted he had no problem with the former PM’s actions.
It’s great that we’ve got former prime ministers,” he told Mr Morgan.
Emily Atkinson2 February 2023 20:47
Rishi Sunak insisted he can get the economy growing again “this year” as he urged people to “have hope” that things will get better.
In an interview with Piers Morgan for TalkTV, the PM went through his five priorities, insisting he could get them done.
“Grow the economy, yes, I do believe over the course of this year we’ll get the economy growing again,” he said. “Reduce debt, We’ve already made some difficult decisions to ensure that that happens but we’ve got to stick to the path.”
Asked what his mantra or message to people is, Mr Sunak said: “It’s ‘have hope’. Have hope because I can make it better, and I will make it better.
“That’s what I’m working day and night to do.”
Emily Atkinson2 February 2023 20:43
Rishi Sunak has insisted he would “love to give the nurses a massive pay rise”, saying it would make his “life easier.”
The last few months have seen nurses take to the picket lines in their tens of thousands in a deepening dispute over pay and conditions.
Speaking to Piers Morgan, Mr Sunak said: “It’s the right thing for the country to stay the course” and not offer higher pay rises because of inflation.
Emily Atkinson2 February 2023 20:37
Rishi Sunak has insisted that the government’s Rwanda migrant scheme will happen, but said ministers were working hard to get the law “absolutely right.”
The prime minister said the UK was “always going to be a compassionate country”, but not a “soft touch” on immigration.
Emily Atkinson2 February 2023 20:24
Rishi Sunak: I believe wholeheartedly I can turn UK mess around
Rishi Sunak says he “wholeheartedly believes” he can turn around the mess the country is in by controlling inflation, growing the economy, cutting NHS waiting lists and stopping migrant boats.
In his first 100 days in office, he is proud of what the government has achieved, firstly taking action to stabilise the economy, he claimed, saying he was confident he will deliver on those aims.
The Sunak doctrine, he said, was about making sure people could feel proud of the UK and have peace of mind things would be better for their children and grandchildren.
Emily Atkinson2 February 2023 20:20
Rishi Sunak tells Piers Morgan his message to the public, given the cost of living crisis, is to “have hope because I can make it better and I will make it better.”
Emily Atkinson2 February 2023 20:13
Sunak was ‘bowling with family’ when Liz Truss resiged
Rishi Sunak claims he was at a bowling alley with his family when he was made aware that Liz Truss was resigning as prime minister.
“The whole thing came as a big surprise and the country was in a tight spot,” he tells Piers Morgan.
He admitted to “asking myself the same question on occasion” when the host asked him why he wanted to be prime minister following the market turmoil under Ms Truss.
“It was going to be a nightmare job,” Mr Sunak said, adding “It was not an easy situation. But, for me, it’s about duty. That’s how I was raised.”
Explaining his decision to make a second bid for No 10, he said: “I felt I was the best person to make a difference at that moment.”
Emily Atkinson2 February 2023 20:11