Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Another example of why I called for a moratorium on Nazi comparisons

Here is a classic example of a talented speaker abusing his abilities in a way which discredits both Britain and the arguments which he is making.

It also illustrates the point I made a few days ago when I appealed to people of all parties to hold off on comparing anyone they disagree with to Hitler and the Nazis.

A few years ago I and my Conservative colleagues in Copeland said, as you can read in a letter to the Whitehaven News from our then chairman here, that it was inappropriate for the Labour MP for Copeland to compare David Cameron to Nazi collaborator and traitor Vidkun Quisling.

It was equally wrong for Nigel Farage to compare Nick Clegg and Ed Miliband to Quisling in this speech in the European parliament, for exactly the same reasons.

Farage was rightly picked up by the chair for doing this just as Jamie Reed was asked to withdraw his similar comparison by the Deputy Speaker of the House of Commons. As you can see in the clip below, he declined to apologise and tried to justify the comparison.

It takes courage to admit you have got something wrong and apologise. For me the lowest point in the referendum campaign was when Michael Gove compared Nobel Prize winning economists with Nazi collaborators, but I will say this for him - when Gove made an utterly inappropriate Nazi comparison, at least he had the guts to retract it and apologise. That makes him a bigger man than Nigel Farage.

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