Dan Hannan has a habit of saying different things depending on what side of the pond he’s on.
The Tory MEP and leading Brexiteer holds back on some of his more extreme Thatcherite fantasies when speaking to a UK audience, but can’t resist pleasing hard-right Republicans during frequent visits to the US.
Most infamously, he went on Fox News to tell Americans that the NHS is a “mistake” they shouldn’t recreate.
Now for another classic of this genre, courtesy of a briefing from Open Britain.
It details how, in 2016, Hannah traveled to Washington DC to give a speech to the Heritage Foundation, which has a long history of denying climate change and close links to the Trump administration.
Speaking about the prospects for a post-Brexit trade deal with the US, the Tory politician said:
“In reality of course the deal is unlikely to be done just by Heritage and me.
“Our state machines will get their hands into it and they of course will try to make it about everything except trade. They’ll make it about ecological standards, and women’s rights, and child labour, and everything except the free exchange of goods and services, and that’s what opens the door to the corporate capture.”
The mask slips again. Just another thing on Hannan’s long list of things to deleted:
— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) November 28, 2017
While Hannan isn’t in government, he is in a position of influence over its trade policy.
He recently founded the Institute for Free Trade in order to lobby for lower regulations over food, the environment, workers’ and apparently women’s rights.
The IFT was launched at the Foreign Office by Brexiteer ministers Boris Johnson and Liam Fox – two people who will have a direct say over the terms of Britain’s trade with the US.
Somehow, we don’t think women’s rights will be a stumbling block with Trump…