Cabinet minister Nicky Morgan has broken ranks with the rest of the government to reveal she would still vote to Remain in the European Union if given the chance in a second referendum.
But the culture secretary insisted she did not support holding another poll and believed the original result needed to be “fulfilled”.
In an interview with BBC Breakfast, Morgan, who backed the Remain campaign in 2016, said she would vote the same way in a second referendum.
“I would vote to remain,” she said.
Pressed on the remarks in an interview on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, Morgan explained: “I feel very firmly that the result of the 2016 referendum needs to be fulfilled and that’s why I’m in the Cabinet and that’s why I support Boris Johnson’s determination to make sure that we do leave the EU by October 31, preferably with a deal…
“My instincts are that I was sorry that the Remain campaign didn’t win in 2016 and that really I’m sorry that we’ve seen all the division and uncertainty over the last three-and-a-half years.”
She said she would vote to stay in the EU “for the same reasons that I felt very firmly back in 2016 and I campaigned for Remain” – which she said were both economic and geopolitical.
But Morgan went on to insist that her views on the matter had “evolved” because she could now “see a way for the UK to leave the EU and to do it with a deal and to strike out in different ways in the rest of the world”.