Confused by another week in Brexit? We round up the losers and the losers (because there are no winners) of another crazy seven days on Planet Brexit
10) Jack Brereton (NEW ENTRY)
By the time you read this, real-life Tory Boy Jack might be the Conservatives’ youngest MP, having stood for them in the Stoke by-election. But even if things have gone the other way and the 25-year-old has achieved the remarkable record of being officially less popular than either Paul Nuttall or Gareth Snell (or both), he will be remembered for bringing one moment of sheer joy to the campaign – a social media message pledging his allegiance to something called ‘Bexit’. Born in the city, Jack’s other campaign literature boasted of his ‘proven track record of delivering for local people’. Current projects he and others in Stoke city council’s ruling coalition are trying to deliver for local people at the moment include a new budget which will cut spending on children’s centres by £1 million.
9) Katie Hopkins (DOWN 4)
Calculated outrage factory Katie’s latest wheeze is attempting to pick a fight with Remainer and Green MP Caroline Lucas over her appearance at a Westminster protest against Donald Trump’s state visit to Britain. ‘Caroline Lucas spoke for vegan lesbians of Brighton hoping to deny Trump a state visit because he likes burgers,’ she Tweeted, later adding ‘you wanted to deny Trump a state visit because he is straight and likes cheeseburgers? Get a grip Caroline Lucas.’ But how did we arrive at the fanciful notion that the Brighton Pavilion MP wants Trump banned because of his fondness for fast food? Easy – because it occurred in Katie Hopkins’ brain. Reporting from the protest for Mail Online, she wrote ‘I suspect she is also cross he loves a good cheeseburger, but she didn’t have time to vocalise this important political point.’ Now we’ve established that simply suspecting ridiculous things makes them true and a fair basis for trolling, we’d like to point out that the only reason Hopkins is so utterly, irredeemably horrible is that all the bright, happy, popular girls at her school wouldn’t share their Quorn lunches with her, forcing the young Katie to eat BSE-ridden budget hamburgers rejected by Cordelia Gummer. Get a grip, Katie!
8) Misty Thackeray (RE-ENTRY)
The rotund sex offender and former chair of UKIP Scotland has been suspended from his role as an advisor to MEP David Coburn and faces expulsion from the party after being sentenced for targeting women by phone. Heavyweight Misty – real name Arthur – is ironically thought to have found some of his victims by calling the numbers on posters for slimming classes. Happily he’ll have plenty to do to fill the empty hours – at Glasgow Sheriff Court he got 270 hours of community service.
7) Liz Truss (NEW ENTRY)
The gaffe-prone justice secretary, a staunch Remain campaigner during the referendum, sparked incredulity by claiming she would now vote for Brexit. Yeah, because it’s all going so well, isn’t it? Perhaps Liz is no longer worried about her children, of whom she said last year, ‘I don’t want my daughters to grow up in a world where they need a visa or permit to work in Europe; or where they are hampered from growing a business because of extortionate costs and barriers to trade.’ Extra marks for having to be corrected by a BBC presenter when she said Article 50 was ‘not a legal issue’ – in fact it is a process enshrined in British law, but then Liz doesn’t need to know incidental details like this as she’s only the Lord Chancellor.
6) The Christian Soldiers (NEW ENTRY)
UKIP fringe group who distributed a leaflet at the party’s conference which stated: ‘Bible-believing Christians who support Britain’s membership of the European Union (EU) are committing spiritual treason against the almighty God and his kingdom.’ According to Buzzfeed, a representative of the Soldiers also appeared at a conference event to explain that Donald Trump was right to be a climate change sceptic because carbon dioxide is good for us.
5) Nigel Evans (NEW ENTRY)
Brexit-loving Tory MP who told the Commons this week that ‘I have seen no evidence of Donald Trump being racist’, suggesting he has had his eyes closed since 2011. The member for Ribble Valley’s biggest contribution to the referendum campaign was a speech nine days before the poll in which he said ‘there is undeniably an issue with migration into this country… the current situation is untenable and the only way it can be stopped is if we, the British public, vote to leave the EU on the 23rd June.’ Twelve days later, Evans told Radio 5 Live that there had been ‘some misunderstanding’ about the consequences of Brexit on immigration and, when asked if migration to the UK would fall when the country left the EU, answered: ‘No.’
4) Jane Collins (RE-ENTRY)
With a Nuttallesque approach to accuracy, the Yorkshire and North Lincolnshire MEP has rebounded from being told to pay £160,000 in libel and slander damages to three Rotherham MPs in typical style – by making a speech based on a police statement which did not exist. Home Affairs spokesperson Collins told the party’s conference that not only were hundreds of illegal immigrants arriving in Britain every week, but that they were not being arrested when they were caught. She claimed that was a ‘direct quote’ from Sussex Police. Alas, the former horse physio turned out to be talking complete fetlocks, with the cops’ official Twitter account clarifying: ‘We’ve not reported there being 100’s of illegal immigrants a week or even a month.’
3) Richard Littlejohn (NEW ENTRY)
Shriller, madder, even less empathetic voices may have emerged to drown out his Route One left-baiting prattle, but the veteran Daily Mail columnist is still capable of staging the odd spectacular. This week the man known to Viz readers as Richard Littlecock (‘Little Cock, Big Opinions’) welcomed Government suggestions that shops and food manufacturers might once again sell in pounds and ounces. He then called for the return of pounds, shillings and pence but disappointingly stopped short of calling for the barter system to be brought back. Happily comparing imperial apples to metric oranges, Littlejohn claimed that post-decimalisation, ‘2/6d in old money became 26p – more than twice as much’ and harumphed that fresh meat is now sold in 450g packs yet ‘a pound is equivalent to 453.59g’. Somewhat embarrassingly, the central tenet of his piece, that going decimal allowed greedy shopkeepers to put up prices, was dismissed by historian Dominic Sandbrook in the same Daily Mail six years ago (‘almost certainly this was an urban myth, for with inflation already at a staggering 9.4 per cent, prices were soaring anyway’). You couldn’t make it up! Except when he’s actually making it up!
2) The Swede bashers (NEW ENTRY)
Donald Trump erroneously claimed Sweden had been the target of a major incident, Nigel Farage popped up from under his bridge to call Malmo ‘the rape capital of Europe due to EU migrant policies’ and the much-derided blogger Paul Joseph Watson offered British journalists free trips to the southern city (but went strangely quiet when several attempted to take him up on it). Yet oddly none has mentioned the fact that Swedish statistics for the crime actually started increasing sharply from 2004, seven years before the refugee crisis brought a dramatic uplift in the country’s migrant population. This coincided with the country changing its laws to introduce a more wide-ranging definition of rape, and also with a drive to encourage victims of sexual offences to come forward. As Abba once observed, ‘one of us is lying’.
1. Boris Johnson (RE-ENTRY)
Still not quite getting the hang of this diplomacy thingy, artfully mussed national embarrassment BoJo shipped up at the Munich Security Conference to bang on about Britain’s ‘liberation’ after Brexit, upsetting delegates from countries which had been liberated from actual bad things like the Nazis and/or the USSR. Meanwhile, Boris’ apparent derision for Tony Blair – he quipped that viewers should ‘rise up and turn off the TV’ whenever the former PM is on – looked somewhat odd when it was revealed that he had sought Blair’s advice on the Middle East last October and again this January. Still, he wore some Hawaiian shorts and an old polo short to go jogging, so it’s all a bit of a, laugh, isn’t it? No, it isn’t.
SNOWFLAKE AWARD: This week’s hero of the revolution
Plaudits to the peer who told the House of Lords how voicing concerns over Brexit led to her receiving messages ‘branding me ‘slut’, ‘whore’, ‘harlot’, ‘scum’ and much, much worse. Encouraged, no doubt, by various, more vicious parts of the media.’ Just a typical press-hating leftie or Lib-Dem? No, Tory peer Baroness Wheatcroft, a former editor of the Sunday Telegraph and the Wall Street Journal Europe.