In an act of enormous personal honesty, a Brexiteer who changed his mind decided to revisit his old tweets and reply to them from his new Remain perspective.
Jamie Thomas, a Labour supporter who lent his vote to the Brexit Party in the EU elections, has spent plenty of time on Twitter discussing everything from Guy Verhofstadt to Project Fear.
But thanks to keeping an open mind and following a wide range of views, he said he “slowly” changed his mind to Remain.
“I was just looking through my old tweets because I was curious about how much my opinion had changed as I didn’t really feel the shift,” he explained to The New European.
“I realised that some of the tweets I wrote were just plain wrong so I wanted to correct them.”
As has been revealed since by the Govt's own info, the worst case scenario was right. But the Leave campaign dismissed it as Project Fear and enough people believed them to affect the result. But now we have a chance to avoid that worst case scenario.https://t.co/9hpNG7kF1P— Jamie Thomas (@jthomaspolitics) October 13, 2019
By going through his old tweets and quote-tweeting them with his current opinion, he’s caused a huge reaction and has had more than 1,800 retweets.
He started with a reply he had made in February to Gavin Esler, suggesting that Guy Verhofstadt was unelected.
Correcting himself in October, he said: “Verhofstadt is an MEP! He was elected by the people of Belgium in the European Parliament elections!”
In another quote-tweet, he disagreed with his earlier statements on the 2016 referendum campaign.
But the result has not been ignored, that is why successive Prime Ministers and governments have attempted to negotiate a deal with the EU that can pass through Parliament. It is still OK to ask "Now we have a defined Leave option, is this what you want?"https://t.co/DzkVDwehLQ— Jamie Thomas (@jthomaspolitics) October 13, 2019
In February, he had said that because the Remain campaign focused on the worst case scenario, so people cannot claim they were uninformed about what Brexit meant. But he has now pointed out: “The Leave campaign dismissed it as Project Fear and enough people believed them to affect the result.”
While in March, Jamie warned against “ignoring” the result of the referendum, he later quote tweeted himself saying:
“But the result has not been ignored, that is why successive prime ministers and governments have attempted to negotiate a deal with the EU that can pass through parliament. It is still OK to ask ‘Now we have a defined Leave option, is this what you want?'”
The full thread of 12 instances of Jamie arguing with his old political viewpoint can be read here or by clicking any of the embedded tweets.
I did end up voting for the Brexit Party in the EU elections. Massively regret that. I don't think I'm the only one who did.— Jamie Thomas (@jthomaspolitics) October 13, 2019
Now I'm annoyed at Labour for not yet deciding to CAMPAIGN FOR Remain in their 2nd ref. How things have changed.https://t.co/pPMNZhAbLk
Jamie is one of many people using the #RemainerNow hashtag of people who have changed their minds on Brexit.
Boris Johnson becoming prime minister was “the final push I needed,” said Jamie, who is normally a Labour supporter. But he said he began changing his mind around May to June this year.
He said that using Twitter more regularly for “balanced political news” had influenced him, as he had decided to follow people from both sides of the argument. “I quite rapidly came around,” he said on Twitter.
“The response has been really positive,” Jamie told The New European. “I don’t think I’ve had any responses at all from angry Leave voters.
Thank you for all the lovely messages! Here's a picture of Wilbur pic.twitter.com/DgQvBiL4Uw— Jamie Thomas (@jthomaspolitics) October 13, 2019
“I have mixed feelings about that because on the one hand I’d rather not get a bunch of nasty messages but on the other hand it shows that probably quite a lot of them are in a bubble of Twitter users completely isolated from the opposing view.”