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Thérèse Coffey denied claims of “bullying” or “manhandling” at a fracking vote in the House of Commons during a fiery debate on Friday’s instalment of Good Morning Britain. Coffey, who has been appointed Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, slapped ITV host Adil Ray down as she rebuffed his questions throughout the interview. 

Ray began: “We were speaking to Sir Lindsay Hoyle earlier, who said there is an investigation taking place about some serious bullying and manhandling going on, we saw and heard about scenes regarding the fracking vote. 

“And it’s been said that you were at the centre of that…exactly what happened? 

“Do you admit and you accept that they were quite ugly scenes right in the Houses of Commons at such a critical time and you were seen being at the centre of it?” 

“No, I don’t accept that at all,” Coffey fired back. “And frankly, I’m not going to dwell on these things.

“People have posted things I believe to be libellous. 

“What I did was to vote for the Government on that day, in terms of what it turned into, effectively a vote of confidence by shenanigans by the Labour Party. 

“And frankly, the way they behaved shows they’re not fit to govern at all.” 

“Are you saying,” Ray interrupted. “Are you saying Chris Bryant MP, Shadow Minister…” 

“I am not getting into this…” Coffey cut in as the ITV host tried to talk.

When Ray asked the minister if she pointed her fingers aggressively at anyone she replied: “Absolutely not.” 

Hawkins interjected: “As we say, there is an investigation into it, so I am sure we will get more details as to what went on.” 

The Labour Party’s motion on fracking was defeated by 230 votes to 326, with a majority of 96. 

A total of 40 Conservative MPs did not vote with the Government, and 36 are listed as having not recorded a vote. 

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Speaking in the House of Commons, Hoyle told MPs: “I’ve asked the Serjeant of Arms to investigate the incident and report back to me.”

He said he wanted the Commons where politicians treat each other with courtesy and respect. 

“I will be meeting with senior party representatives to seek an agreed position that behaviour like that described last night is unacceptable in any circumstances,” he added. 

Jacob Rees-Mogg also insisted he had seen no evidence of anyone being “manhandled”. 

However, Sir Charles Walker MP told BBC News the behaviour was “inexcusable”. 

He added: “It is a pitiful reflection on the Conservative Parliamentary Party at every level and it reflects really badly, obviously, on the Government of the day.”

Coffey has denied any bullying allegations made against her concerning the vote. 

Good Morning Britain continues on weekdays from 6am on ITV.

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