The Tory MP Mark Francois was delighted — if a little surprised — to be approached by BBC1’s Have I Got News For You. “He would be a great guest,” a researcher gushed. Not that great, obviously. He was replaced at short notice last week by the Liberal Democrat Layla Moran.
“I presume the BBC invited me because of my relatively high profile as a Brexiteer,” says Francois. “It dropped me without explanation for one of the most pro-EU MPs in parliament.” It could have been worse. At least he wasn’t replaced by the infamous tub of lard.
Actually, the real way that it could have been worse is if he had appeared. I suspect he had a very lucky escape. Ian (the Miles Malleson of satire) and the waxwork of Paul wouldn't have made it much fun for him.