John Cleese: I'm quitting Britain | Comic's fury over MPs' vote not to curb the press © Rose d'Or

John Cleese: I'm quitting Britain

Comic's fury over MPs' vote not to curb the press

comedyJohn Cleese has vowed to leave Britain, after MPs voted against tightening up press regulation.

Before last night’s vote on implementing the second phase of recommendations from the Leveson inquiry, the Python star tweeted: ‘If our corrupt PM wins, meaning that people will still live in fear of the Daily Mail, and she will continue to take her orders from Murdoch… I'm out of here. I refuse to live in an England like this.’

The Commons voted  304 to 295 against introducing the measures – which the newspaper industry warned would seriously hamper press freedom – thanks largely to Northern Ireland’s DUP MPs backing the Government.

Writing on Twitter, Cleese  said: "So nine DUP Neanderthals sold the nation down the river, so that May could keep intact her deals with Murdoch and [Daily Mail editor Paul] Dacre. So much for the explicit promises made to press victims by Tory PM Cameron. Bye!’

In a later tweet, he added: ‘I'll be back when they move forward on Leveson. But not till then. I believe this is the essential first step in getting our surprisingly corrupt institutions back on track.’

Cleese has been a leading, outspoken campaigner with the Hacked Off group seeking to curb the behaviour of the British press.

As well as owning property in Bath, Cleese has homes in Beverly Hills and Monaco. 

Some newspapers have pointed out that the US has no formal press regulation, with freedom of expression guaranteed by the first amendment, and the only rules on Monaco’s newspapers is that they are not allowed to criticise the Royal family, the Grimaldis.

Published: 10 May 2018

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