Birmingham and Britain vote for Brexit
The evening started with Nigel Farage conceding, unconceding, conceding and then unconceding defeat before he popped up to claim victory prior to the three broadcast networks calling it for Leave – all before Birmingham’s results were revealed.
By around 4.30am it became clear, if not fully official, that voters in the United Kingdom have voted to Leave the European Union.
For the last few days and as the ballot boxes were sealed, most commentators and pollsters were calling it for Remain. But as results from Newcastle, Sunderland and beyond came in, the prospect of a Leave vote grew and grew. As it did, the pound continued to fall and the financial markets began to rethink the confidence they had placed in the UK remaining part of EU and its single market.
There are many questions which arise which go far beyond how the majority of the polls did not manage to predict the result.
The Prime Minister’s fate and legacy would seem to be sealed. We can expect to see him on he steps of Downing Street in the next hour.
There will be questions too for Jeremy Corbyn and the inability of the Labour party to encourage its core voters to mark an ‘X’ by Remain.
What will happen in Scotland and can the union hold?
Will the PM invoke Article 50 in the next few days? Will EU Heads of Government look for ways to persuade Brits to think again?
Has Boris Johnson got enough phone lines installed for his leadership campaign? For how many days will Nigel Farage’s party last?
Closer to home, what effect will the decision have on Greater Birmingham’s economy which had been booming and which has enjoyed record levels of inward investment?
Historic is a word overused by political commentators. But tonight has been both extraordinary and truly historic. The coming hours, days, weeks and months will be unprecedented.
For the record, the result in Birmingham:
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