THE Conservative leader of the House of Commons has said that his fondness for deep fried Mars bars is one point on which he can “agree with the Scottish National Party”.
Jacob Rees-Mogg was answering a question from fellow Tory MP Mark Eastwood, when he went on a tangent about his own diet.
Eastwood, the representative for Dewsbury, had asked about proposals to restrict the online advertising of certain foods.
He said: “[Rees-Mogg] once revealed to the House that he likes a good proper plain British banger.
“However, proposals to restrict the online advertising of certain foods are currently under consultation.
“If accepted, they would ban farm shops, butchers and pubs from North East Somerset [Rees-Mogg’s constituency] to Dewsbury advertising their delicious bangers on social media, local newspaper websites and even email newsletters.
“Given the pervasive impact of the proposals and the flimsy evidence base, will [Rees-Mogg] commit to holding a debate before any proposals are taken forward?”
The leader of the House responded: “In 2020 of all years, I think it’s right that we do all we can to support small businesses in our food and hospitality sectors.
“I must confess, I wouldn’t hold up my own diet as being a model for anybody else, child or otherwise. I have a predilection for Creme Eggs which is probably not to be encouraged.
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“And I did even once have a deep fried Mars bar which was absolutely delicious… and I’m glad to see that there’s something with which I agree with the Scottish National Party.”
The parliamentary television feed did not show any members of the SNP agreeing with Rees-Mogg, although the Tories on the benches behind him could all be seen to laugh, which the MP did acknowledge.
He continued: “Reducing obesity levels is a key priority of this Government and rightly so, bearing in mind the effects of obesity on Covid.
“And our ambition is to halve childhood obesity. However, I understand the [Department of Health and Social Care] and [the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport] are currently running a consultation on how to proceed with their proposed policies on food advertising.
“And I would urge all honourable and right honourable members and indeed members of the public to respond.
“And [Eastwood] might like to write in and remind people that a Mars a day helps you work, rest and play,” Rees-Mogg added, referencing the famous slogan used to advertise the chocolate bar.
Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle added: “I think we need more work at the moment.”
Rees-Mogg recently made headlines after claiming that Tony Blair’s Labour government had “vandalised” the UK constitution and saying that he hoped the current administration would “undo their foolish tinkering”.
The Tory MP’s comments were widely condemned and taken to mean that his party hoped to see “devolution demolished”.