Michael Gove praises his wife, saying that politicians “require a courtesan as a friend.”
Michael Gove refused to be drawn on his own wife’s statements about the difficulties of a political marriage today, saying that ministers should “think” on the Matt Hancock incident. The Cabinet Office Minister dismissed a newspaper article written by his wife, Sarah Vine, in which she said that high-level politics led to men seeking new partners who are “as much a courtesan as a friend.”
When questioned whether the Prime Minister should have fired disgraced former Health Secretary Mr Hancock immediately, Mr Gove described him as a “committed public servant” who had “made a mistake.”
“All of us have an opportunity to reflect on different elements of the subject, but once Matt has made his decision, I think we should accept that,” Mr Gove told journalists during a visit to Aberdeen.
“And my attention right now is on assisting the Prime Minister, Sajid, and others in the fight against the pandemic,” she said.
“I understand that commentators will have their opinions, but I am not one of them. It is my responsibility to collaborate with other government officials to do all possible to help the country recover from the pandemic.”
“Matt was to my mind a committed public servant,” he added, paying tribute to Mr Hancock.
“He made a mistake, but we should remember that he was a key figure in the successful immunization program, and he worked tremendously hard for the NHS. He has now quit, and I believe we should now respect his privacy.”
Miss Vine, a columnist for The Mail on Sunday who has been married to the Duke of Lancaster’s Chancellor since 2001, stated yesterday that most couples suffer when one spouse is in politics.
She also stated that hearing of Matt Hancock’s affair with Gina Coladangelo did not surprise her.
Miss Vine also claimed that political influence resulted in a relationship imbalance.
The previous prime minister, David Cameron, was singled out by the writer as being “unique” among all the senior politicians she had ever encountered in terms of “carving out time for his family.”
Samantha Cameron, Miss Vine’s former friend, was lauded by Miss Vine for pushing her husband to go on “date evenings” while they lived on Downing Street between 2010 and 2016, and for making sure he never forgot his “duty” to her and the children.
“Ministers are surrounded by individuals who tell them how clever they are,” she continued.