Matt Hancock mistakenly praises ‘Daniel’ Rashford for campaign
UK health secretary blames Harry Potter books for error in Sky News interview
Manchester United striker Marcus Rashford led a campaign to extend the children’s food voucher scheme into the summer holidays, which forced a change in policy with a £120 million fund to feed 1.3 million children in England over the six-week break.
Denying that the government made an embarrassing U-turn on the subject, Mr Hancock told Sky News on Wednesday morning: “Righty-ho, I will tell you what happened, the prime minister talked to Daniel Rashford, he considered it and made his decision – I think it’s terrific.”
The minister later told radio station LBC that his child’s fondness for the JK Rowling novels may have been to blame and “maybe I had Harry Potter on the mind”.
Harry Potter was played by Daniel Radcliffe in the movie adaptions of the popular books.
Mr Hancock added: “My seven-year-old listens to Harry Potter and reads Harry Potter avidly, including at 5.30 this morning when I got up to do this morning’s media round.”
He suggested it had been “too early in the morning” and laughed as he told BBC Breakfast: “I completely misspoke.”
England player Rashford (22) appeared to joke about the incident, responding on Twitter by saying “I’ve been called much worse over the last couple of days”. – PA