‘It was never meant to happen, Brexit was just a game for politicians’ says Irish journalist

PUBLISHED: 15:35 21 November 2018 | UPDATED: 15:46 21 November 2018

Michael Gove and Boris Johnson during a Vote Leave EU referendum campaign event. Picture: PA

Michael Gove and Boris Johnson during a Vote Leave EU referendum campaign event. Picture: PA

PA Archive/PA Images

Brexit was only meant to be a game for politicians, and was never intended to happen, a leading Irish journalist has explained.

Fintan O’Toole said that the Brexiteers only intended for the EU referendum to be used for political purposes, and they did not plan for winning.

He told James O’Brien on LBC that the Brexiteers do not want to be the ones to admit that they may have made the wrong choice, but that they realised they had made a grave error of judgement.

He said: “Nobody wants to lose face. Nobody wants to admit that they might have made a mistake.

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“The real secret of Brexit is that it was never meant to be serious, you know. It was a game these people were playing and it was a game they were playing entirely for their own political purposes, but also just because it was quite fun and it seemed to have no consequences.”

He said that Boris Johnson had compared it to throwing stones over a wall.

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“Boris once said it was like throwing stones over your neighbour’s wall and listening to their glass houses shatter. You know, it’s quite fun. Except that of course the glass houses are real people now.

“This has become jobs, it’s become people’s prospects, this is going to have catastrophic consequences for everybody except themselves of course.”

He added that all of the Brexiteers advocating Brexit have “lifeboats”.

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“Rees-Mogg has just moved his two big hedge funds to Dublin to avoid Brexit. Nigel Lawson, who’s chair of the Leave campaign is off in France. Farage has German passports for his children.

“All of that is well known. I think what you need to say to people is, ‘Look they’re not making a sacrifice here, you are the sacrifice. Are you happy being sacrificed?’”

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