George Osborne refused to confirm if he had ever travelled in standard class on a rail journey, during an unexpectedly difficult interview today.
The development comes after the chancellor was found on first class carrying a standard class ticket. His aide eventually paid the extra £160 for him to stay where he was, following protests from ticket inspectors.
"I am not getting into my train travel now," Osborne said today, when he was asked if he had ever travelled in standard class.
Osborne was supposed to be enjoying a relatively easy interview, as he was appearing to talk about positive GDP figures on Sky News.
But the chancellor looked evasive and uncomfortable in another section as he refused to say whether there had been a reduction in his own living standards as a result of the recession and the government's austerity programme.
Asked about his lack of popularity, he said: "A chancellor at a time like this who was popular would not be taking the right decisions."
GDP figures released today showed a one per cent growth in the economy in the third quarter of 2012.