Culture Secretary Nadine Dorries has faced a backlash after mocking Rishi Sunak over his expensive taste in clothing.
Ms Dorries, a supporter of Mr Sunak’s leadership rival Liz Truss, pointed to reports that the millionaire former chancellor has been pictured wearing a £3,500 suit and £490 Prada shoes.
She said Foreign Secretary Ms Truss is more likely to be seen in a pair of £4.50 earrings from high street chain Claire’s.
But Ms Dorries herself has previously talked about having a £6,000 pair of diamond earrings and told reporters “I don’t skimp on jewellery”, going as far as designing her own bespoke pieces.
The row over Mr Sunak’s wardrobe is the latest sign of the bitter, personal nature of the Tory leadership battle.
Cabinet Office minister Johnny Mercer warned that the “puerile” nature of the contest could see the Tories turfed out of office at the next election.
“The puerile nature of this leadership contest is embarrassing,” he said. “Time to raise the standards.”
Guildford MP Angela Richardson, a supporter of Mr Sunak, simply wrote: “FFS (for f***** sake) Nadine! Muted.”
Mr Sunak was seen wearing a Henry Herbert suit – worth a reported £3,500 – ahead of the vote that saw him and Ms Truss selected by Tory MPs as the final two candidates to be the next Conservative Party leader and prime minister.
His choice of Prada shoes on a visit to a construction site in Redcar also caught Ms Dorries’ attention.
The Culture Secretary wrote Ms Truss “will be travelling the country wearing her earrings which cost circa £4.50 from Claire Accessories.
“Meanwhile… Rishi visits Teeside in Prada shoes worth £450 and sported £3,500 bespoke suit as he prepared for crunch leadership vote.”
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