Brexit: Boris Johnson is a ‘tough guy’ says Jean-Claude Juncker
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The former European Commission President and Brexit critic insisted he did not defend the EU’s point of view in the UK. He also claimed he was too silent throughout the debate over the UK’s departure from the bloc. Former Prime Minister Mr Cameron had called the Brexit referendum in 2016 after renegotiating parts of the UK’s membership with the EU.
Speaking to The i newspaper, Mr Juncker said: “I should not have listened to David Cameron.
“He told me not to interfere in the debate in the UK, not to come to London, not to do interviews with the British press.
“I made a mistake because I did not defend the EU’s point of view in the UK.
“They asked me to shut up, so I shut up. That is something I criticise myself for.
“I should have spoken out rather than stay silent.”
But the claims from Mr Juncker have been furiously shot down by Express.co.uk readers, who have claimed if he had intervened, the Leave victory in the 2016 referendum could have been even bigger.
Our latest poll, which ran from 2pm until 10pm on Tuesday April 20, asked: “Would Jean-Claude Juncker have stopped Brexit if he stepped into EU row in UK?”
A huge 97 percent (3,403 readers) said the former EU chief would not have stopped Brexit if he had intervened in Britain over the UK’s departure.
The remaining three percent (122 readers)said he could have made a difference, while less than one percent (14 readers) were undecided.
Commenting on our initial poll story, one furious Express.co.uk reader said: “Deluded! If he had got more involved the vote would have been 60/40 to leave.”
A second person wrote: “He would have swung the result even more in Leave’s favour if he meddled, and Cameron knew it.”
Another reader commented: “How could he stop it? He was one of the reasons we wanted to leave.”
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A fourth person added: “More importantly, did he? No!
“His contempt for the UK just added more and more fuel to the fire of leave.”
The UK finally completed its full departure from the EU on New Year’s Eve.
This came four-and-a-half years after the historic Brexit referendum that saw Britain vote by a margin of 52 percent to 48 percent to leave the bloc.
Mr Juncker was instrumental in the intense Brexit negotiations between the UK and EU.
But he stood down from his position in 2019 after five years in the role to be replaced by Ursula von der Leyen.
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