An MP has accused some Brexiters of sounding like “Jihadis”, as she lamented the “tone” of the debate around leaving the EU.
Claire Perry, the Tory MP for Devizes in Wiltshire and former minister, said that the debate had bordered on “the hysterical” and compared Hard Brexiters to religious fanatics.
During the debate on the bill to trigger Article 50 on Tuesday, she said: “I have to say, the tone of this debate, we’ve heard a little bit but it is starting to calm down, sometimes borders on the hysterical.
“I feel sometimes I am sitting alongside colleagues who are like Jihadis in their support for a Hard Brexit. ‘No Brexit is hard enough. Be gone you evil Europeans. We never want you to darken our doors again’.”
As colleagues appeared to wince and urge her to tone down her language, Perry said: “People say ‘steady on Claire’. I’m afraid I heard speeches last week exactly making that point.”
Referring to the fact the Government had had to have a parliamentary debate and vote on leaving the EU, Perry said: “The more we get this out in the open, the more we are not led by some of the more hysterical tabloid newspapers out there.
“The more we actually have an open and frank conversation with each other about what we want to do, the better.”
Perry campaigned for Britain to remain in the EU, saying: “It is my belief that the greatest economic growth and prosperity will be delivered by remaining inside the Union.”