Dominic Raab is known for his “robustness”, a former Cabinet minister said today, as he confirmed that he and the deputy prime minister had “a disagreement” over a policy.
Ex-justice secretary Sir Robert Buckland said Mr Raab, who is being investigated over bullying allegations, was “at the top end of the robustness scale”.
Sir Robert acknowledged that he had “a disagreement” with Mr Raab over a Daily Telegraph article he wrote criticising his plans for a British Bill of Rights. But he added that they had “moved on now” and that he didn’t want to “rake back through the coals”.
His comments came as Rishi Sunak faces calls from unions, opposition MPs and even former Tory chairman Sir Jake Berry to suspend Mr Raab while a investigation into the claims is carried out.
The Times reported that Mr Raab tried to get Sir Robert sacked from the role he held as Welsh secretary at the time of the row in the summer of 2022.
The newspaper reported that Sir Robert told Mr Sunak about the “intimidating” and “unacceptable” behaviour – something denied by Mr Sunak’s allies.
Downing Street has repeatedly stressed that Mr Sunak was not aware of any formal complaints about Mr Raab’s behaviour when he appointed him as deputy PM in October 2022, although No 10 has refused to say whether he knew of any informal concerns.
When asked whether it was true that Mr Raab issued the threat over the Bill of Rights article, the Tory MP told LBC: “I don’t want to rake back through the coals of what happened last summer.
“Dominic and I have a disagreement about his Bill of Rights, clearly he wasn’t going to agree with the article that I did write in the Telegraph.
“There are robust disagreements in politics. I’m old enough and ugly enough to hold my own corner, and Dominic is known for his robustness as well. There was a disagreement, but we’ve moved on.”
Senior lawyer Adam Tolley KC was appointed by Mr Sunak to investigate the claims against Mr Raab once it was clear that formal complaints about his conduct had been made.
Mr Raab has denied the bullying allegations.
Source: The Independent