Thank you, Theresa May!
For any news junkie with an interest in history and politics, watching Sir Tim Barrow deliver the letter to the EU that would trigger Article 50 and kick-start the Brexit process was required Live viewing. The BBC faithfully followed events in Brussels and Westminster. I sat glued. Then my blood began to boil.
The wisdom of calling the Brexit referendum, or whether Britain should have voted to remain or leave the EU, is debatable, but Theresa May’s stance during the run-up to the vote is not. Mrs May was a staunch Remainer.
As was the Conservative Prime Minister David Cameron, the man who’d called the referendum. Rather than stay and help sort out his own mess, he jumped ship the following morning.
One could be charitable and argue that the obligation to deal with the Brexit aftermath lay with the Brexit supporters. Ha! They ran for the hills as fast as their smug little legs could carry them. Their loudest supporter, UKIP Leader Nigel Farage, claimed he had achieved his political ambition and wanted his life back. He resigned 11 days after the referendum.
Turns out neither side had a plan in the event of a Brexit win. What now?
Theresa May steps up to become the next Conservative Leader and Prime Minister.
Her two biggest challenges lay in reuniting the divided United Kingdom and respecting the Brexit result. And in full knowledge that I am repeating myself, I’d like once again to point out that Theresa May voted to Remain. Brexit was not her choice. Delivering Brexit is her obligation.
Which leads me back to yesterday.
On confirmation via Twitter (Twitter?!) that Donald Tusk had received her letter, Mrs May held a speech in Westminster. She outlined the contents. Or at least she tried.
The noise from the right honourable men and women was deafening. They jeered, they hounded. They sniggered. On several occasions, Theresa May was forced to stop and wait to be heard. Personally, had I been sitting on one of those benches, regardless of whether I were a Remainer or Brexiter, I would have wanted to hear every syllable. The country’s future is at stake. Shut up and listen.
Labour’s lame duck Jeremy Corbyn (the man with the forgettable face who had put party before country by choosing to dither rather than support the Remainers because heaven forbid that he should agree with the Conservatives) leapt to his feet with demands and protests. He wanted this. He demanded that.
I willed Theresa May to slap him down with a resounding you should have thought about this a year ago, you prize fool. But she didn’t. She slapped him down with facts. Go Theresa!
And thank you.
Thank you for standing up for Britain.
Thank you, Mrs May, for having a stronger backbone than Mr Cameron, Mr Farage and Mr Corbyn.
Thank you for not walking away at times when you must surely have asked yourself why do I bother?
Thank you for trying to come to a sane, damage-limiting agreement with the EU.
Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.