Caroline Lucas was asked five times whether or not she supported the M25 blockades by climate activists this week, each time refusing to condemn the Insulate Britain group for wrecking lives and livelihoods.
Grilled by Trevor Phillips on Sky News, the Green Party MP attacked the government for not doing enough to address the campaign’s concerns, and indicated her support for their actions which we know led to at least one four-car pile up seriously injuring one woman, and cost a mother the movement in the left side of her body after she and her son failed to get to a hospital in time following a stroke.
Asked if she herself would have blocked the M25, Lucas told Sky News: “I have a proud history of taking non-violent action as does the Green Party and we believe that it is legitimate when other forms of trying to raise issues with the government have failed.
“We need to understand why protestors have taken this extreme action,” she added.
“I’m taking that as a yes,” the presenter replied. “You think it’s reasonable for this cause to stop people from going to work. You think that’s okay and you would have been out there.”
Lucas attempted to evade the direct question, calling out the government for being unreasonable in addressing the activists’ concerns.
“Let’s stick with the protest itself,” Phillips hit back. “You think it is reasonable for them to have done what they did,” he put to the Brighton Pavilion MP.
“I think their demands are reasonable,” she replied.
“I’m asking about what they did,” Philips reiterated.
“In an emergency situation, it is reasonable to take emergency action,” insisted Lucas.
“Asking one more time. Just to be absolutely clear. You think this was a perfectly reasonable action. If they sent you an invitation next time you’d say: ‘Yeah, I’ll come and I’ll block the M25.'”
“I am saying that in extreme situations it is reasonable to take extreme actions and that is what has driven these protestors to do that,” Lucas concluded.
The climate protestors were allowed to conduct blockades of one of Britain’s busiest motorways twice this week – with police officers actually stopping traffic to facilitate the protests – until the police finally got tough and dragged activists from the highway in Friday’s third attempt to disrupt the lives and livelihoods of Brits.
Drivers stuck in the resulting hold-ups were incensed, leading to some vigilante attempts to clear the activists from the road.
The protestors have been heavily criticised for their actions by politicians and media alike, with GMB presenter Richard Madeley telling one of Insulate Britain’s organisers their actions were akin to “fascism”.