Brexiteers of week: Steve Baker bashes the archbishops

Steve Baker appearing on Sophy Ridge on Sunday

Brexiteer MP Steve Baker on Sophy Ridge on Sunday

The contenders are...

THE DAILY EXPRESS

With fingers crossed and touching wood, the American election that is now less than two weeks away looks to be not going too well for Donald Trump.

Unless, of course, you are a reader of the Express online, where recent headlines have included “Joe Biden on brink as Donald Trump told he’s ‘VERY likely’ to win US election” and “Donald Trump backed: New poll shows overwhelming support for US president”.

Sadly for Donald, the news that “he’s ‘VERY likely’ to win US election” turned out to be just the view of someone called Sergio Montanaro, spokesperson for Italy’s version of the Brexit Party. And the “new poll” showing a “staggering” Trump lead of 80%-20% over Biden was of readers of Express.co.uk, who are unlikely to swing the big vote on November 3 because the vast majority of them live in the UK.


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NADINE DORRIES

The health minister tweeted: “If herd immunity existed, measles and chicken pox would have been wiped out years ago. There is no such thing as herd immunity.”

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Yes, there is such a thing as herd immunity. It happens when a virus no longer has the potential to spread rapidly "exponentially" due to most people having been vaccinated. It helped wipe out smallpox in 1977, which Nadine Dorries might remember as she was a trainee nurse at the time!

DANIEL HANNAN

The so-called ‘Brain of Brexit’ is at it again. “After 1782, Great Britain recognised the reality of American independence and focused on agreeing strong trading ties with the new state - much to its own benefit,” he wrote, adding that, “The EU, sadly, has been unable to make an equivalent psychological adjustment".

That’s quite the rewrite of history from Desperate Dan, missing out as it does the small matter of the War of 1812. During this, Great Britain recognised the reality of American independence by burning down Washington DC - including the White House - and attempting to invade New York and Maryland, while also supplying arms to Native Americans attempting to stop settler expansion.

Meanwhile, Britain also focused on agreeing strong trading ties with the new state by continuing to impose navigation acts, cutting it off from trade to British colonies. Don’t call him Dan, The History Man...

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SHARKS

It’s claimed that some of the biggest beneficiaries of Brexit will be cold-blooded, dead-eyed, ruthless creatures - no, not Dominic Cummings and Michael Gove, but Jaws and his pals. Fisheries minister Victoria Prentis has told MPs that leaving the EU on December 31 will bring an end to the cruel practice of hacking fins off live sharks to use in Chinese soups, then throwing the fish back overboard to bleed to death.

But isn’t this already illegal under EU law? Apparently so, but according to Prentis, loopholes make it unenforceable. In which case she’s going to love WTO rules, which say that if one country in the trade organisation - and let’s just imagine that it might be China - disagrees with a proposal, it can’t go ahead and remains (ahem) unfinished. As they almost say in Steven Spielberg’s classic, “she’s going to need a bigger vote”.

But the Brexiteer of the week is...

STEVE BAKER

The former leader of the European Research Group - which didn’t like Europe and appeared to have done very little research - is now applying his analytical skills to the church.

Baker has accused archbishops who oppose the internal market bill of “sowing division where they might have promoted unity” and suggested that “perhaps the prime minister ought to move to a paving motion on the disestablishment of the Church of England". Thank goodness he’s not over-reacting!

Could this be just a ruse so Jacob Rees-Mogg can say “antidisestablishmentarianism” in the Commons and then grin like he’s nanny’s special boy? Is it what the Tories had in mind all along when they talked about using Henry VIII powers to force Brexit through? How long before Boris Johnson starts shouting "will no one rid me of this turbulent priest?" Ian Botham for Archbishop of Canterbury, anybody?

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