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A leading Brexit-backing Conservative MP has exposed his own astonishing lack on understanding about the relationship between Ireland and the United Kingdom by making the entirely false claim that all English people are somehow legally entitled to an Irish passport.
The Conservative MP for North West Leicestershire, Andrew Bridgen, displayed his phenomenal lack of knowledge about the crucial aspect of Brexit during a BBC Five Live radio phone-in discussion with the BBC’s Northern Irish radio host, Stephen Nolan.
During the discussion about the Irish border after Brexit, Bridgen falsely claimed that every English citizen was entitled to an Irish passport, stating:
“Well, that’s the common travel area as well, isn’t it? We do have the right to go over to Ireland, don’t we?
As an English person, I do have the right to go over to Ireland and I believe that I can ask for a passport. Can’t I?.”
However, after having his false assertion challenged by the host, Bridgen then, astonishingly, went on to repeat and expand on his claim:
“There’s a reciprocal agreement where I can go to Ireland and ask for an Irish passport and someone from Ireland can come to the UK and ask for a British passport.
We have that system. That’s the system we have, isn’t it?”
Northern Irish citizens are allowed to choose between having a UK, Irish, or dual citizenship passport, but the scheme does not apply to citizens of any other region of the United Kingdom.
In order for a UK citizen to apply for an Irish passport, they must have Irish ancestry such as a parent or grandparent of Irish heritage.
Following the discussion, Bridgen’s brazenly false claims were completely taken apart by the BBC’s political correspondent, Chris Butler.
You can listen to Bridgen’s incredible claims and their forensic destruction below: