WHILE the Mail chooses to label those brave ERG Brexiteers refusing to fall in line with May’s BRINO ‘zealots’, and equates them with Jihadist suicide bombers, the BBC casts them as extremists, or even better, as fascists.
This week they dropped their regular ‘hardline’ slur in favour of the more potent depiction needed, as No Deal threatened, to turn these middle-of-the-road conservative souls into political pariahs.
John Humphrys turned up the heat on Wednesday in an interview with Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt, proffering a bizarrely one-sided analysis to blame ERG ‘extremists’ for the current crisis:
Humphrys: ‘What MPs had seen in this Prime Minister is pretty much at every stage she had given way to a group of people regarded by some as extremists in the ERG group. She has listened to them, she has done what they wanted her to do, now she is paying the price for that turning on all the other MPs . . .’
How this ‘theory’ accounts for numerous Brexit resignations from the Government as May trampled over them Hunt, shamefully, did not ask.
This was just the warm-up. Friday morning’s programme saw Mishal Hussain all but accuse Nigel Farage of inciting violence for saying he would be fighting back. And she didn’t let up.
But that was soon history. Back from the dead came James Naughtie – a reliable Tory-hater when one is needed – to expound on why, in his view, in any other European country, Jacob Rees-Mogg’s group would not be in a Conservative Party but the National Front ‘because that is what they believe’.
He has since apologised, saying: He said: ‘I was wrong to say in a live discussion this morning that members of the ERG would be happy in a far right party.
‘That was not my intention, because I don’t believe it. I was trying to make the point that if our parties fracture in some way after Brexit – on Right and Left – we could see a political landscape emerge that looks more like the rest of Europe than it does at the moment.
‘But my words were ill-chosen and I’m sorry for any offence caused.’
Not, as you see, an unconditional apology. He stays on our Wall of Shame.