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Another day, another litany of Gove half-truths and untruths

by Luke Lythgoe | 08.05.2016

Michael Gove’s latest appearance on the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show was riddled with errors, many of which the justice secretary has made before. This track record suggests the Vote Leave frontman doesn’t care about getting facts right.

Britain’s EU budget rebate is in danger

Having been told his £350 million figure for the UK’s weekly EU budget contribution was “not a fact” by Marr, Gove argued that the rebate secured by Margaret Thatcher “can be whittled away”. In fact, if the EU wanted to scrap, reduce or otherwise change the rebate, there would need to be a unanimous Council vote. In other words, Britain could veto it.

ECJ stops UK deporting terrorists

Gove pulled rank, telling Marr: “I’m the justice secretary, I know.” He claimed the ECJ is “telling us who we can and cannot deport”.

This popular Brexiteer fallacy originates from an ongoing case surrounding the attempted deportation of Abu Hamza’s daughter-in-law, controversial since she has a young child. The ECJ hasn’t yet ruled on the case.

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Chances of post-Brexit independence for Scotland

Edinburgh-born Gove rejected the notion that Scotland might secede from the UK if we quit the EU: “I think a majority of people in Scotland will also vote to leave (the EU)”, he said, adding that “having voted to leave one union, the last thing the people of Scotland will want to do is break up another”.

Gove’s confidence that Scotland will vote for Brexit isn’t reflected in opinion polls. If the Scots do vote to stay in the EU and the UK doesn’t, that doesn’t necessarily mean they will secede. But it is still a risk.

Gove racked up several other errors. The so-called Five Presidents’ Report for shoring up the eurozone does not mean the UK “could lose autonomy economically”. Cameron did not give away Britain’s veto on deeper integration by other EU members in his pre-referendum negotiation. And it’s misleading to cite Open Europe research on the cost of EU regulations without mentioning that the benefits exceed the costs.

Does Gove care about the facts?

The justice minister didn’t respond to queries.

Edited by Hugo Dixon

2 Responses to “Another day, another litany of Gove half-truths and untruths”

  • enjoy the regular updates – and the half truth busting they so often contain.
    please keep them up!
    the campaigns generally are of vvv poor quality and your website goes a long way to improve our understanding of the “remain” case.

  • He also lied when he said that SNP only prospered because of EU membership and that they had never won a seat at a General Election until after UK entered the EEC.

    In fact, Donald Stewart won the Western Isles for the SNP at the General Election of 1970.