This is the sort of comment that looks set to be remembered and could be damaging. In many ways he was right but he could have expressed himself very differently given the impact that the move away from coal had on many communities across Britain. This reinforces established perceptions that the Tories didn’t care.
Paul Waugh in his Tweet above reckons that there will be a “clarification” from Number 10. The danger here is that this would focus attention on what was said before and unless it is drafted very carefully could exacerbate the whole affair.
The problem is that Johnson’s spontaneity is in many ways one of his strengths and why his supporters like him.