The UK may be divided over the best policy for Brexit but the prime minister’s speech appears to have brought the country together – in opposition to Theresa May herself.
Thousands of Twitter users have been venting their frustrations on the hashtag #NotOnMySide after her latest televised address that she would seek to extend the negotiation process, telling voters ‘I am on your side’.
But the assertion appears to have fallen on deaf ears as leading figures on both the Remain and Leave sides opposed her statement.
Brexiteer radio host Julia Hartley-Brewer ‘She’s #NotOnMySide. I voted for Brexit’, while anti-Brexit campaigner Femi Oluwole called it ‘almost laughable’.
He tweeted: ‘It’s almost laughable. Theresa May is trying to force a Brexit deal on the country that both remainers and leavers hate, because it trashes UK sovereignty AND takes us out of the EU and she’s claiming to be on the side of the people? #NotOnMySide’
One angry pro-Brexit user said May had ‘a lack of dignity and a head full of delusion’ following the speech.
They tweeted: ‘My job requires me to deliver results. If I didn’t deliver or felt I couldn’t do it I’d be promptly sacked or I’d leave to save myself the embarrassment of failure.
‘May’s had 2 long years to prove herself & she hasn’t. A lack of dignity and a head full of delusion. #NotOnMySide’
Another Leave voter wrote: ‘Sorry @theresa_may but you are #NotOnMySide. I voted leave, not this rubbish deal that will leave us worse off than before.
Elsewhere, an anonymous user who called themselves ‘British European’ wrote: ‘I felt so incensed by @theresa_may and her truly awful statement tonight that I signed up to Twitter just so I can say: #NotOnMySide’
May’s speech largely blamed MPs for the stalemate in parliament, leaving many politicians furious.
Tory MP Sam Gyimah tweeted: ‘Resorting to the ‘blame game’ as the PM is doing is a low blow. Democracy loses when a PM who has set herself against the HoC then blames MPs for doing their job. Distracts from Art 50 extension, all part of her strategy to run down the clock and rule out other options. Toxic.’
And Labour’s David Lammy called the speech ‘sinister’.
He wrote: ‘Theresa May’s attempt to put parliament against the people on £Brexit tonight is sinister. It is the populism of Steve Bannon and Donald Trump. History will judge her brutally. Our country deserves so much better than this.’
MP Phillip Lee said that the prime minister is offering no end to Brexit.
‘The PM said we should let it happen simply because everyone is tired of talking about Brexit. But leaving without knowing where we are going is a recipe for further division. It won’t be the end of all the arguments but a signal that they have only just begun. It will sap energy, talent and resources for a generation and beyond, preventing us from addressing any of the huge challenges – from health and housing to automation and climate change – that face our country today.
‘The prime minister’s deal offers us no clarity and no end to Brexit. Instead we face years, if not decades, of Prime Ministers travelling back and forth to Brussels trying to make sense of a deal that makes no sense for Britain.
‘What is needed now, at this 11th hour, is for MPs to insist on the time and space we need to work out what Brexit means – soft or hard – because any Brexit will inevitably leave many voters disappointed.’