Great Britain

Lauren Boebert invokes Churchill to mock British government’s Covid policies

Congresswoman Lauren Boebert invoked former UK Prime Minister Winston Churchill while complaining about coronavirus restrictions in Britain.

The controversial Republican from Colorado appeared to imply the UK was weak for using social distancing restrictions in order to curb the pandemic.

"As of May 17, Brits can hug again per their government. They’ve sure come a long way since 'we will fight them on the beaches,'" she wrote, referencing a famous speech Churchill gave to the House of Commons in 1940 addressing the potential invasion of Britain by Nazi Germany.

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson approved a gradual reopening plan for the UK on Monday that would allow limited indoor gatherings again on 17 May, including "cautious hugging."

The congresswoman – who spent her first month dodging calls for her removal from office for her alleged incitement of the Capitol insurrection – has worked to counter government mandates intended to fight the spread of the coronavirus.

In January, Ms Boebert tried to pass a bill that would outlaw Joe Biden's federal mask mandate.

"Notwithstanding any other provision of law, no person may be required to wear a face covering on Federal property or while traveling in interstate commerce," the bill's language read.

She later explained that she would prefer if the president put people back to work and re-opened, despite the fact that in January few Americans outside of the elderly and those with pre-existing conditions had received their vaccines.

"The Biden administration is already headed in the wrong direction. Instead of focusing on reopening our economy and getting Americans back to work, this president wants more mandates and more lockdowns. Continued federal overreach won’t end the Covid-19 pandemic or put food on the table," she said.

However, it appears that the federally coordinated vaccination campaign is slowly returning the US to a pre-pandemic state, and unemployment pay extensions have helped to keep food on the tables of out of work Americans.

The congresswoman and other conservative voices have criticised the government for issuing mask mandates and, in the early days of the pandemic, shutdowns. They argue that people should be free to choose whether or not they want to wear a mask or dine inside, regardless of how those decision may effect other Americans – or the world.

During the Second World War, citizens in both Britain and the US endured the rationing of food, gas, and numerous other goods to help ensure supplies needed for the war were available.

In fact, just five years before Mr Churchill became the prime minister – on 10 May 1940, exactly 81 years before Ms Boebert’s reference to him – the British government issued all citizens, men, women and children, with "general civilian respirators", better known as gas masks.

In the wake of World War I and the lead up to World War II, British civilians were instructed not only to carry their gas masks with them, but to practise with the bulky, rubbery masks for 10 to 15 minutes one day each week.

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