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Nadine Dorries grilled over James O’Brien’s comments in excruciating exchange

Nadine Dorries faced an uncomfortable grill today from MPs over her controversial tweets about journalists.

The Culture Secretary has been hammered home by Scottish National Party MP John Nicolson over comments she has made in the past.

However, a quick search on his own Twitter revealed that Nicolson apparently described Dorries as looking “unstable” in 2017.

The terse exchange took place at a meeting of the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee on Tuesday.

Nicolson pressed her on a 2017 tweet in which she attacked LBC broadcaster James O’Brien.

She had described him as a “classy, ​​fucking-minded public school boy”, although he attended the same school as his daughters.

When asked if such correspondence would fall under the category of abuse under the government’s proposed online safety legislation, she replied, “I am not going to answer any of these questions, I find them quite enough.” personal … “

However, committee chair and Tory MP Julian Knight told her that under the potential online harm legislation she could have tremendous power.

Dorries replied: “So, James O’Brien, I think if you look up the number of times I’ve tweeted James O’Brien, I think he might find two.

“If you’re looking for the number of times James O’Brien has persistently tweeted me to the point where we had at my office several years ago, probably around 18 months, two years ago, had to write to Global to complain that his behavior was in the realm of harassment – that’s when I sent this tweet.

When Nicolson made it clear to her that she allegedly implied that he had mental health issues and that she had pushed for him to be fired, she replied, “What I would say is that with a number of female politicians, I’m subject to a small number of men who tweet about me obsessively, aggressively, obnoxiously and James O’Brien is one of them.

Nicolson continued his questioning, raising an alleged “retweet” of a post in which he was described as a “hate preacher, liar, misogynist, UK hater and apologist for Islamist atrocities.”

When Nicolson told her it was “libelous and grotesque,” she replied, “I disagree with you and I did not come here today to respond to any tweets I sent there. years ago.

“I understand the context, in my role as Secretary of State, but as I said, as a politician … I have to quite often, like many women, respond confidently to the many aggressive and unpleasant tweets. and I wouldn’t say – looking at your own tweet history – that this is something to be particularly proud of, either. ”

Nicolson replied, “Oh, you won’t find any abuse in my tweet history.”

HuffPost UK reached out to Global for comment, while O’Brien tweeted: “I haven’t heard it yet but would love to provide him with a public platform to repeat any allegations in public…”

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