Mordaunt: I pity Andrew Bridgen if he believes Covid conspiracy theories

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A Cabinet minister has criticised MP Andrew Bridgen for repeating “conspiracy theories” about Covid, adding that they include “falsehoods” originating in Russia and China.

Commons Leader Penny Mordaunt said she pities Mr Bridgen if he believes the claims he is making.

She added that the MP for North West Leicestershire should “check his behaviour” if he does not believe the claims and is “repeating them for another matter”.

Ms Mordaunt also advised Mr Bridgen to research some of the claims he has made, with one post on Twitter alleging the US Department of Defence was “responsible for both the virus and the vaccines”.

Mr Bridgen is currently sitting as an independent MP. He lost the Tory whip after appearing to compare Covid-19 vaccines to the Holocaust.

He told the Commons: “The Leader of the House will no doubt recall that we both ran on a manifesto commitment in 2010 to scrap Labour’s plans for identity cards and we were supported by the electorate on libertarian and privacy grounds.

“Given that there has been no public consultation on this matter since, can we please have a debate on any Government plans for the introduction of digital IDs, which have recently been trumpeted by Tony Blair, who is the heir apparent to the World Economic Forum throne, and interestingly is also the original proponent of those identity card plans which the electorate rejected at the ballot box.”

Ms Mordaunt replied: “It is incredibly important that such matters are debated but there are no such plans to introduce the measures that he alludes to and nor, I’m afraid, is the mention of the World Economic Forum or some global conspiracy that sits behind all of this remotely accurate or based in fact.

Andrew Bridgen
Andrew Bridgen (Beresford Hodge/PA)

“For example, that the US Department for Defence is actually responsible for producing Covid.

“The provenance of those falsehoods is Russia and China.

“And if the honourable gentleman wants to repeat such conspiracy theories – if he believes them I pity him, if he doesn’t believe them then he’s repeating them for another matter and I’d ask him to check his behaviour.”

Mr Bridgen last week used a debate in the Commons to call for the Government to “immediately stop the mRNA vaccine booster programme and initiate a full public inquiry into not only the vaccine harms but how every agency and institution set up to protect the public interest has failed so abysmally in its duties”.

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