David Cameron has passionately rejected criticism from the Archbishop of Canterbury that the coalition was pushing through radical policies “for which no one voted”.

The Prime Minister said Dr Rowan Williams was free to express his concerns, but he “profoundly disagreed” with many of the comments.

Speaking at a press conference on a visit to Northern Ireland, Mr Cameron said: “I think the Archbishop of Canterbury is entirely free to express political views. I have never been one to say that the Church should fight shy of making political interventions.

“But what I would say is that I profoundly disagree with many of the views that he has expressed, particularly on issues like debt and welfare and education.”

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