UKIP’s only MP tries to school science professor on science... and fails
Carswell, MP for Clacton-on-Sea, challenged Paul Nightingale, a science policy researcher, after the academic used the concept of gravity to argue that the UK sign trade deals with neighbors rather than China.
“Want 2 understand trade? Think gravity: size & distance matter. UK-Ireland greater than UK-China
"Jupiter is big but the moon moves tides," he wrote on Monday.
Minutes later, Carswell crafted a tweet of his own in an attempt to refute the claim.
“[a]ctually it's the gravitational pull of the sun. The moon's gravity does Spring / neap tides,” he said.
Scientists agree that tides are primarily caused by the gravitational pull of the moon as it orbits the Earth. While the sun does have a limited effect on the Earth’s tides, the greater distance between the Earth and the sun means that this effect is much smaller, despite the sun’s much bigger size.
Nightingale called out the Euroskeptic MP for the glaring factual error, but the MP was undeterred and continued to insist that he knew better.
Sharp-eyed Twitter users quickly seized on the bizarre exchange to poke fun at Carswell and his party.
Douglas Carswell is in good company. The British Navy in his patch misunderstood tides and ignored experts too. The Dutch invaded in 1688.— Tom Forth (@thomasforth) September 20, 2016
This week on "Carswell vs The Experts", Douglas tries his hand at physics. You have to admire his tenacity. Facts ain't gonna hold him back. https://t.co/LgXtXIqeHy— The Secret Barrister (@BarristerSecret) September 20, 2016