Our much-coveted WIPE award – Windbag Incorporating Pompous Ego -is for people in public life who have shown remarkable stupidity, crassness and pomposity over the course of the week.
We have to say that the Right Honourable Member for Rayleigh and Wickford is a worthy inaugural winner, having excelled himself with outstanding buffoonery in his performances in the media and in the House of Commons.
Mr Francois, described by some of his many admirers as “the angry pork pie” is the self-appointed spokesman for all 17.4 million people who voted to leave the EU. Yes, every single one of them. He takes his responsibility seriously and has decided that every Leave voter in the country voted for his version of Hard ‘Bulldog Britain’ Brexit.
He has therefore been a firm opponent of Theresa May’s Withdrawal Agreement, voting against it several times and insisting that it will never pass through parliament. He is also opposed to any other form of Brexit other than his own.
When Chancellor Philip Hammond dared to suggest the government might have to explore other forms of Brexit, Francois went on national radio to send this message: “And if you’re listening, Mr Hammond, my fraternal message to you is, up yours!”
Perfidious Albion on Speed
Mr Francois specialises in being outraged at any every opportunity no matter how little the provocation. When Theresa May sought an extension to Article 50 to allow the UK more time to negotiate a Withdrawal Agreement, he went on red rage overdrive, urging EU leaders to reject the request and threatening that if there was an extension and the UK was forced to fight EU elections, then Europe would face the wrath of “Perfidious Albion on Speed”. Many commentators felt that he had almost certainly picked up the word from his posh mate, Jacob Rees Mogg.
Mr Francois sometimes struggles to understand the difference in basic concepts such as why “all cows are four-legged animals” is different to the statement “all four-legged animals are cows” as illustrated in this tasty exchange with Will Self, who suggested that most people who were racist probably voted to Leave.
Mark Francois: “A slur on 17.4m people…you should apologise on national TV….outrageous thing to say”
— BBC Politics (@BBCPolitics) March 8, 2019
While this displays the high level of stupidity required of our winners, what really enabled Mr Francois to clinch the Our Swipe of the Week award was his outburst in the Commons as MPs debated the Cooper Letwin motion to delay Brexit.
Mr Francois described it as constitutional outrage and, then to illustrate that his self-delusion knows no bounds, he quoted Jesus with the words: “Forgive them father for they know now what they do.”
I’ve been racking my brains all morning attempting to recall a more ridiculous character than Mark Francois, only to draw a complete blank.
An absurd little man whose egocentric delusions far outstrip his frankly minuscule ability.pic.twitter.com/HPrMV2e6dI
— Graham Lithgow (@grahamlithgow) April 4, 2019
Our judges were unanimous in their decision, that such arrogance and pomposity should not go unrewarded.
Mark Francois we salute you. Our WIPE of the Week.