You lied to us! Rees-Mogg on the spot as radio caller launches a heated energy cost rant

Jacob Rees-Mogg grilled by radio caller

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A fierce LBC caller claimed guest Jacob Rees-Mogg made false promises about Brexit when he suggested prices would fall as a result of leaving the European Union. Caller Brenda from St Ives pointed out the Leave campaign had predicted a fall in energy prices as well as additional cost-cutting measures as a result of withdrawing from the bloc. She said: “We were told if we exited the EU we would have lower energy prices, cuts in VAT, and cheaper food.

“You lied to us. Why hasn’t this happened?”

As the cost of living in the UK soars, Mr Rees-Mogg was quick to defend his claims that an EU departure would make living more affordable.

He explained: “Well what we said was that it would be possible to change VAT on energy.

“Actually, in the budget, the Chancellor cut VAT on means of saving energy.”

The Minister was referring to reductions in VAT made on insulation and other energy-saving measures made by Chancellor Rishi Sunak. 

Mr Rees-Mogg argued this was in line with his promised Brexit perks as the VAT reduction “was something we could not do within the EU.”

The Minister for Brexit again dodged the caller’s accusations, stating “what I argued about food is that we have tariffs on food.” 

A frustrated Nick Ferrari interrupted the Minister to point out “food price inflation is up 4.3 percent last month.”

Mr Rees-Mogg agreed with a “yes,” before Ferrari butted in to highlight “that’s not cheaper.”

The Minister continued to deflect the caller’s direct question surrounding food prices as he argued pricing and reducing tariffs are simply “two different things”

Read more: Rees-Mogg blames post-Brexit red tape for fishermen woes

“The more trade deals we do, the more tariffs will be removed,” declared Rees-Mogg.

He excused the rising food costs, adding “there is a global inflation in food prices which has nothing to do with Brexit.”

The Minister argued that the increase in food prices seen in the UK is unrelated to Brexit and the current global situation could not have been predicted in the planning to exit the European Union.

He said: “The fact that the wheat price has gone up because, partly, the invasion of Ukraine by Putin’s forces is not something that I was speculating on in the run-up to Brexit.”

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Mr Rees-Mogg continued to deny the accusations of deceit levied by the caller as he claimed discussion of Brexit creating lower food prices was actually about “tariff and non-tariff barriers which are being removed as we make more free trade deals.”

The Minister argued that the removal of these barriers would result in lower food prices, although the global inflation surrounding food costs is currently disguising this.  

Mr Rees-Mogg described the removal of the tariffs to be a “fundamentally important” aspect of his Brexit policy. 

He remained adamant that Brexit will reduce the cost of living in the UK as the new trade deals established by the Government will certainly “ameliorate the cost of living crisis that we are suffering from.”

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