Michael Gove goes to war with The Guardian

Written by Josh May on 16 June 2016 in Diary

The cabinet minister disputed the Guardian's story on his father during a BBC Question Time event.

Michael Gove has launched a scathing attack on the Guardian, accusing the newspaper of using his father to “serve their agenda” in the European Union referendum.

The justice secretary’s father, Ernest Gove, told the newspaper he had sold his fishing business – which Michael Gove had previously claimed went to the wall because of the EU’s common fisheries policy – due to a range of different factors.

“It wasn’t any hardship or things like that. I just decided to call it a day and just sold up my business and went on to work with someone else,” Ernest Gove said.

Brexit campaign Vote Leave immediately put out a statement from Ernest Gove saying that his business “closed as a result” of the damage caused by the EU to Scotland’s fishing industry.

In a BBC Question Time special yesterday evening, his son accused the newspaper of having “tried to put words into his mouth”.

The Conservative MP said: “My dad was rung up by a reporter from the Guardian who tried to put words into his mouth, but my dad has been clear – he was clear to the BBC on Sunday night, he was clear to me when I was a boy – that the business that he invested so much care and time in had to close as a result of the Common Fisheries Policy.

“I remember when my dad ran his business, two of his employees were lads who were in a care home, they didn’t have parents. My dad took them in, gave them a job, and allowed them to work in his business and to sleep there in a spare room that he made for them. That business closed, those boys lost their home as a result of what happened.

“I know what my dad went through when I was a school boy and I don’t think that the Guardian or anybody else should belittle his suffering or try to get a 79-year-old man to serve their agenda instead of agreeing and being proud of what his son does.”

Guardian journalists, however, defended the accuracy of the story.






Picture by: Isabel Infantes/EMPICS Entertainment/Press Association Images

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