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Listen: Andrew Bridgen’s bungled bid to defend Jacob Rees-Mogg

Oh dear. Andrew Bridgen is a friend of Jacob Rees-Mogg, but it’s unlikely the Tory MP will be thanking his colleague for his latest intervention.

Bridgen attempted to defend his chum on BBC’s PM programme just now following a furious reaction to Rees-Mogg’s comments about the Grenfell fire tragedy.

Bridgen said that Rees-Mogg’s remarks were ‘uncharacteristically clumsy’. He was then asked:

Evan Davis: ‘Do you think he meant to say that he thought he would not have stayed put?’

Andrew Bridgen: ‘That’s what he meant to say. That’s what he meant to say.’

ED: ‘But in a way that is exactly what people object to, because he is, in effect, saying: I wouldn’t have died because I would have been cleverer than the people who took the fire brigade’s advice.’

AB: (pause) ‘But we want very clever people running the country, don’t we, Evan? That’s a by-product of what Jacob is.’

With friends like these, who needs enemies?

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Steerpike is The Spectator's gossip columnist, serving up the latest tittle tattle from Westminster and beyond. Email tips to or message @MrSteerpike

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