Brexiteer Baker tells Boris to ‘unleash’ potential outside EU after swipe at Remainers

EU 'trying' to make Britain 'lose Northern Ireland' says expert

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In a wide-ranging interview today, Steve Baker called for strong “domestic regulatory reform” which is equal to Liz Truss’s International Trade Policy as more and more countries sign trade deals with the UK. The former Chairman of the European Research Group also compared the period between the 2016 EU referendum and 2019 general election as a “fiasco” due to “the political class at odds” with the public’s decision to leave the bloc.


He added: “There are always extreme elements in a political conversation [including Brexit].

“Between the EU referendum and the 2019 general election, we had a political fiasco over Brexit because the political class was absolutely at odds with the result they were handed by the public.

“I’m not saying Brexit’s a fiasco, I’m saying Brexit is a hard thing to do but the right thing to do.

“Between those years, we certainly had a political fiasco.”


Mr Baker also opened up about his political career and despite working from the backbenches, he admitted that he “sacrificed” any ministerial prospects after turning down two offers from Boris Johnson to be a Minister of State.

Speaking to Payn’s Politics podcast, he added: “It’s strange to say it now but history will bear me out on this, I either needed to be on the backbenchers to do what I, in fact, did which was to assist my colleagues and get something from government, enough from Government that they felt they could vote for the deal or be the Brexit secretary.

“What I couldn’t do was anything else.

“When I turned down the first job, Boris was kind enough to offer me a second Minister of State job in the Government, one which I would have absolutely loved to do.

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“But as I said to him then: ‘How could I possibly, they’ll say I’ve been brought off and they’d [rebel Tory MPs} be right.

“I’ve absolutely sacrificed my prospects of a political career in order to do what I thought right on Brexit.”

Mr Baker previously served as a Minister under former Brexit Secretary David Davis, who resigned in July 2018.

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Mr Baker backed Mr Davis who shocked former Prime Minister Theresa May by telling her he could not support her Brexit plan and was quitting “in the national interest”.

Mr Baker is also currently serving as Chairman of the Covid Recovery Group, a parliamentary group of lockdown septic MPs.

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