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Veterans Minister Johnny Mercer was described as “furious” and “distracted” by sources when he arrived in the green room for yesterday’s BBC Question Time after being outraged by the latest attack on his wife Felicity by Carol Vorderman.
Just an hour before the show, the former Countdown numbers star Ms Vorderman launched a broadside against Mr Mercer and his outspoken spouse on Twitter.
It was the latest round in a spat between the two women since Ms Vorderman has become a self-declared anti-Tory on social media with a series of tweets attacking individual Tory MPs.
Ahead of the show, Ms Vorderman went directly after Felicity Cornelius Mercer with a barbed Tweet.
Asking her 810,0000 followers to retweet, she posted: “Tory Minister @JohnnyMercerUK mocks military who use foodbanks: ‘personal decision’ he says. We pay his wife in his office 2015/21 her salary ROSE UP TO 200 percent from 15-20k to 40-45k. The GRIFTER-MERCERS anyone?”
READ MORE: Minister calls ‘attack dog’ Vorderman ‘grim’ in veterans food bank row
Then shortly before the show began, Ms Vorderman doubled down: “TODAY Tory @JohnnyMercerUK has been TOTALLY SILENT on this His wife’s c£45,000 salary, 200 percent pay rise since 2015 paid by taxpayers Vs Military pay freeze since 2011 other than three yrs @ two percent increase He says military using foodbanks is a matter of their ‘budgeting’ Wow!”
One source on BBC Question Time described Mercer as “livid” when he arrived and unable to talk about anything else while they waited in the green room before the show began.
The Question Time source said: “He [Mercer] spent most of the time in the green room whinging about Carol Vorderman.”
But it seems that the attack on his wife and her pay via the taxpayer was what really annoyed him.
The source noted: “He said that he was very annoyed and that he had a thick hide, but he wasn’t happy about Vorders going after his wife!”
They added: “Fiona Bruce was very amused by it all.”
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The Veterans Minister then appeared to be “distracted” on the show at one point getting confused and saying Labour funded Just Stop Oil but failing to have a go at Labour and Just Stop Oil donor Dale Vince sitting next to him.
A Labour source said: “We were actually amazed he didn’t go after Vince. He didn’t land a single hit against him.”
But the row between Ms Vorderman and Mrs Mercer has been raging for some days.
Felicity Mercer is well known for not holding back on social media against people who attack her husband or her family.
She infamously had a furious rant about Liz Truss for sacking him as Veteran Minister in her 49-day government.
On Tuesday she posted an article about her describing Vorderman as “an attack dog”, saying: “I’ll just leave this here and hope it doesn’t upset anyone.”
On Tuesday she posted another article about her claiming Ms Vorderman was “inciting hate” against Tory MPs.
She said: “And they call politicians narcissistic; @carolvorders is another level and playing the public for fools. Don’t fall for blanket hatred of any persuasion.”
Mr Mercer has also hit back at Vorderman after one of her tweets about him having “a car crash interview” with Sky’s Kay Burley, he responded: “You are grim” with a vomiting emoji.
After the show, the Question Time source said: “He [Mercer] really couldn’t let it go. He was still complaining about [Vorderman] when he left.”
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