While the country reflects on one of the most seismic political events Britain has experienced in peacetime, David Cameron closes the day knowing his time as Prime Minister is set to come to a dramatic end. The sun sets on a day in politics which had begun with Mr Cameron flanked by his wife Samantha in Downing Street as both fought back tears and brexit is spoke of how he had been ‘proud’ to serve as PM for the past six years. Mr Cameron said it would not be right for him to be the ‘captain of the ship’ while the UK negotiated its exit from the EU. And as voters changed the course of history, one of those who reigned victorious was former London Mayor Boris Johnson, who set out his claim that Britain now had an opportunity to re-establish itself on the world stage – and consequently made a pitch to be Prime Minister of a new ‘great’ Britain outside the EU.
Boris Johnson set out his vision for a revitalised, outward looking country in a speech just hours after his long-time rival tearfully declared that he would stand aside in the wake of the referendum Brexit vote. But it immediately became clear that whoever is in Downing Street will face a struggle to hold the UK together – as SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon warned it was now ‘highly likely’ that a second ballot on independence will be held north of the border. The developments came after the Leave campaign stacked up 52 per cent of the votes – despite massive support for Remain in Scotland and major cities including London. The Bank of England governor Mark Carney has attempted to reassure panicking markets this morning after the Pound nose-dived to its lowest level against the US dollar for 31 years, and the FTSE slumped by 8 per cent. 7 per cent down, as it recovered.
After his speech, Mr Cameron travelled to Buckingham Palace to discuss the results with the Queen. Boris Johnson thanked voters for trusting his plan to leave the EU today and sought to reassure young Remain voters by saying we will be no less European despite cutting ties with Brussels. He insisted there was no need for ‘haste’ in the process of officially withdrawing from the EU as he appealed for calm and sought to reassure fears over economic and political uncertainty. After the EU referendum results delivered a shock win for Brexit in the early hours of this morning, Mr Johnson said the EU was ‘a noble idea for its time’ but was ‘not longer right for this country’. Brussels was ‘too remote, too opaque and not not accountable enough to the people it is meant to serve,’ the former Mayor of London added as he hailed the ‘glorious opportunity’ that quitting the EU gave the UK.
President Barack Obama said the UK will remain an ‘indispensable partner’ of the United States following the Brexit vote in the referendum – even though he intervened in the campaign to say voting to leave would leave Britain at the ‘back of the queue’ for a trade deal. Will a referendum washout boost Brexit? Are your neighbours IN or OUT? So where is David Cameron anyway? Mr Obama said: ‘The people of the United Kingdom have spoken, and we respect their decision. The special relationship between the United States and the United Kingdom is enduring, and the United Kingdom’s membership in Nato remains a vital cornerstone of US foreign, security and economic policy.
So too is our relationship with the European Union, which has done so much to promote stability, stimulate economic growth, and foster the spread of democratic values and ideals across the continent and beyond. The United Kingdom and the European Union will remain indispensable partners of the United States even as they begin negotiating their ongoing relationship to ensure continued stability, security and prosperity for Europe, Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and the world. The bombshell announcement came after possibly the most dramatic night Britain has experienced in peacetime. Leave ended up the clear winner in the EU referendum by 52 per cent to 48 per cent, after Remain’s strong performance in Scotland and big cities such as London failed to offset huge Brexit votes in England and Wales.