Boris Johnson delivers a speech at the DUP annual conference on November 24 2018 | Charles McQuillan/Getty Images
No-deal is closest to UK voters’ idea of Brexit, says Boris Johnson
‘The grimmer the warnings, the greater has been the indifference,’ says the former British foreign secretary.
Updated 1/7/19, 2:18 PM CET
A no-deal exit from the European Union corresponds most closely to the British public’s idea of Brexit, according to former Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson.
In his weekly column in the Daily Telegraph, the leading Brexiteer said that government warnings about shortages of food and medicines had been met with indifference from voters.
“The grimmer the warnings, and the more systematic the efforts to make their flesh creep, the greater has been [people’s] indifference and their resolve,” he wrote.
“It is no deal, or WTO terms, that actually corresponds to their idea of coming out; and they view that option with a confidence that is now directly proportional to the growing strength of the Government’s warnings against it, because these doom-laden predictions are so hyperbolical as to suffer from the law of diminishing returns.”
Brexiteers have, for months, been arguing that a no-deal exit is manageable and government warnings are overblown.
Johnson added, however, that the government needs to do more work to prepare the country for leaving the EU without a deal. “There has been for far too long a confected hysteria about no deal, and a determination to make it taboo,” he said. “That deliberate hysteria has prevented sensible preparations from being made.”