On my website I have at least 50 articles by Boris Johnson criticising the EU and saying we should leave. These date right back to 2009, when I started blogging. There are more than a hundred anti EU articles he wrote before that for the Daily Telegraph, starting in 1989 when he became a Brussels journalist, so how Alan Duncan can say Boris wanted Brexit to lose beats me!A sample of one of these articles is here. Written in 2014, it prophetically declares Brussels must hand back power to the Peasants Revolt. It was Boris who invented the word “Eurosceptic”.
A BBC2 programme now launches an aggressive attack on Boris, through Alan Duncan, saying he never wanted Brexit to win. Foreign Office minister Duncan – which means that Johnson is his boss – will say: ‘I’ve always thought that Boris’s wish was to lose by one so that he could be the heir apparent without having to have all the… you know, s-h-1-t of clearing up all the mess, that’s always been my view of Boris.’
Maybe Alan Duncan actually believes this. But he clearly never did any research, because it contradicts the facts. How does he explain the plethora of anti EU articles that Boris has been pouring out since 1989? The interviews he has given, saying the country deserves a Referendum? (In the interests of fairness, there are a few articles explaining the benefits of the EU, about four.)
Boris knows and has written that the process of leaving the EU is hard. For that reason, when Cameron insisted he would obtain “top to toe” reform of the EU, including the return of our sovereignty and control of our borders, Boris said he would back the government.
But Cameron failed to get any significant changes. Loss of our sovereignty was a particular blow. Boris could have accepted a plum job from Cameron, with little or no effort. But he couldn’t stomach backing an unreformed EU. He had no choice but to back Leave.
Understandably Remainers are very bitter that, with every advantage on their side, they lost the Referendum. But those whose reputations are shattered should revive them by doing good work for the country, not descending to lies and smears. The vicious smear campaigns of Remain were one reason they lost. Do they never learn?