'Doo-di-doo' - how the key Brexit players have changed their tunes

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By Sarah Chappell
'Doo-di-doo' - how the key Brexit players have changed their tunes

On 23 June, the UK held a referendum on its membership of the EU. Leave won by 52 percent to 48 percent. For the UK to begin the process of leaving the EU it must invoke Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty, starting a two year process of extricating itself from the bloc. As yet, the article has not been activated.

So, in an overall sense, the UK’s relationship with the EU has not changed in the month since the vote. But the country has entered one of the most tumultuous times in its recent history – politically, economically, and even constitutionally.

And for many of the UK’s major political players, it has meant a change of tack. Here are a few examples…

David Cameron

Then: Prime Minister Now: MP

Before: Yes, to continuing as prime minister regardless of referendum result. (January)

After: Not right for me to try to be the captain that steers our country to its next destination. (24 June)

And then he literally hummed a tune…

Theresa May

Then: Home Secretary Now: Prime Minister

Before: For the economy, for security, for Britain’s place in the world – we should remain in the EU. (15 June)

After: Brexit means Brexit. (30 June, and almost every day since then)

Boris Johnson

Then: MP Now: Foreign Secretary

Before: The EU wants to create a European superstate, like Hitler did. (15 May)

After: Leaving the EU does not in any sense mean leaving Europe. Our relations with Europe, if anything, are going to be intensified. (14 July)

Michael Gove

Then: Justice Secretary Now: MP

Before: I don’t want to be prime minister. (3 June)

After: I do want to be prime minister. (1 July)

Nigel Farage

Then:UKIP leader, MEPNow:MEP

Before: The 34 million pounds a day (10 billion pounds a year), that the UK currently contributes to the EU budget should instead be spent on vital services in Britain, such as the NHS and schools. (9 June)

After: Of course, no guarantee on where money will go. It was a mistake for the Leave campaigners to pledge that millions would go to the NHS. (24 June)