‘Paxman was fun,’ says MP in inflation grilling

David Gauke, MP for South West Herts.
David Gauke, MP for South West Herts.

THE MP for South West Herts faced some tough questions on the economy last week when confronted by interviewer Jeremy Paxman.

David Gauke, who is a government Treasury minister, appeared on BBC2’s Newsnight to defend the government’s economic policy.

The programme highlighted figures including the current inflation rate at 5.2 per cent; transport costs rising by 12.8 per cent, energy prices by 18.3 per cent and food prices by six per cent, with wages going up by an average of 1.8 per cent.

The UK unemployment rate has risen to 8.1 per cent – its highest for 17 years.

But speaking to the Gazette, Mr Gauke said he felt he got the government’s message across in the programme and added: “The solution to the Eurozone crisis is to have a credible economic plan to reduce deficits.”

The UK VAT rise as well as public sector cuts have helped our government do this, he added.

He said he enjoyed appearing on the show. “It was fun being interviewed by Paxman – it was a serious matter, but a fair interview. He has a very relaxed style and was quite chatty beforehand. He’s quite friendly off-camera.

“He has a reputation for being a tough interrogator, but it is all part of the job.”

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