The Leave camp are going to have a serious problem. Or maybe they’ve always had one.
One thing that seems to be coming increasingly clear – at least, observing events from afar – is that not only have a lot of Remainers failed to understand the reasons behind the Leave vote, but many of those that voted Leave don’t seem to have fully understood what they were voting for either.
This could be a huge problem for the Leave camp.
You are never going to convince those die-hard Eurosceptics, who have spent all their life campaigning against the EU, that actually being part of this European project might not be that bad of an idea.
But you might just convince those that thought the world would be different when they ticked that Leave box that they made the wrong decision.
I have seen a number of people wavering on this and this is a reflection of the poor work that the Leave campaign did in preparing an exit strategy.
They probably didn’t think they had to.
As Sarah Vine has been repeatedly quoted as saying over the past few days – no doubt because it is such an awesome quote – “you were only supposed to blow the bloody doors off”.
No one expected the Leave campaign to actually work, let alone those that were behind the campaign. Every eurosceptic that I spoke to before the referendum were focusing on getting as close to the Remain vote as possible. Certainly they never thought they’d beat them.
But they should have thought harder.
Because it now appears that we are a country without a plan. And since we do actually live in a parliamentary democracy, folk, in case anyone has forgotten, leaving the EU isn’t simply a question of laying a hand on the Magna Cart and saying, “I solemnly swear to invoke Article 50”. As some that voted Leave thought it would be.
And now Nigel Farrage is gone, having tendered his resignation as UKIP leader today. One might have hoped that he’d stick around to try to… you know… formulate a plan. Or perhaps dust off the one that he’d had all along at the bottom of his sock drawer, but with all the excitement of everything had clean forgotten about.
All of this means that many people are feeling duped.
You might be able to win a battle with false rhetoric, grandiose promises and over-simplification.
But you can’t seal that victory.