Brexit minister apologises for entertaining Jacob Rees-Mogg conspiracy theory on Brexit data

Steve Baker was forced to formally apologise to the House this morning for entertaining a conspiracy theory put forward by Jacob Rees-Mogg.

The Brexit minister said he was sorry for not challenging a damaging claim that Treasury officials are attempting to influence Brexit policy.

Mr Baker said on Thursday the accusation was “essentially correct”, leading to headlines such as the one below in right-leaning press outlets.

But he told MPs the next morning: “As I explained yesterday, I considered what I understood to be the suggestion being put to me as implausible because of the long-standing and well-regarded impartiality of the civil service…

“I accept that I should have corrected or dismissed the premise of my Honourable Friend’s question.”

The Wycombe MP added: “I have the highest regard for our hard-working civil servants.

“I’m grateful for this early opportunity to correct the record and I apologise to the House.”

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