Leave campaigner Boris Johnson said in an interview in 2013 that he would vote to stay in the European single market, it has emerged.
Asked by a journalist how he would vote if there was a referendum, Mr Johnson said: “I’d vote to stay in the single market. I’m in favour of the single market.”
The interview contradicts the stance of the former Mayor of London throughout the referendum campaign.
Writing in the Sun on Sunday today, Mr Johnson says: “This is a once-in-a-lifetime chance to take back control of our democracy from an unelected, undemocratic, unaccountable and unreformed European Union.
“We are working flat out to achieve this. It’s a chance to take back control of huge sums of money and to take back control our trade policy. There’s a massive opportunity for Britain. We should be full of excitement and hope about what can be achieved.”
Boris Johnson Meanwhile, David Cameron has warned voters against a one-way ticket out of the EU, saying there would be “no turning back” from a Leave vote.
The Prime Minister said the Leave campaign’s dismissal of experts warning against Brexit is like ignoring the safety advice of a car mechanic.
“If you were about to get into your family car and drive your family at high speed on a motorway and the mechanic said to you, ‘The brakes are faulty, the fuel is leaking, don’t get in that car’, you would listen to that expert,” he said.
“Would you take a risk with your family and get into a faulty car? You wouldn’t.”
As campaigning in the EU referendum resumes, a poll carried out following the death of MP Jo Cox suggests the Remain campaign has opened up a three-point lead.
Survation for The Mail on Sunday, carried out on 17 June and 18 June, put Remain back in the lead on 45%, three points ahead of Leave on 42%.
A BMG telephone poll for The Herald, between 10 and 15 June, put Remain ahead on 46% with Leave on 43%, and 11% undecided or unwilling to say.
However, other opinion polls showed a mixture of results just days before the EU vote.
YouGov for The Sunday Times put Remain on 44%, one point ahead of Leave on 43% in a poll on 16 and 17 June.
ComRes for The Sunday People and The Independent has 44% saying they would be “delighted” with an Out vote compared to just 28% who would feel the same way about In. The poll was done between 15 and 16 June.
Opinium for The Observer, between 14 and 17 June, put the two sides level pegging on 44% – with Leave up two points on last week while Remain was unchanged.
Sky’s Senior Political Correspondent Jason Farrell said: “It seems as if, over the course of just a few days, in the wake of Jo Cox’s murder, that there has been a shift in mood by the public.”
Regarding the YouGov poll, he added: “(YouGov) says that (the results) are not down to a reaction to the killing of Jo Cox but due to a growing concern about the economic effects of Brexit.”
The campaigns were suspended following the death of MP Jo Cox on Thursday, a killing that sparked discussion over the increasingly harsh tone of the debate.
With the referendum set for Thursday, Mr Osborne wrote in The Mail on Sunday: “Let’s have less inflammatory rhetoric and baseless assertion, and more facts and reasoned argument”.
He added that he hoped the campaigning could be conducted in a “less divisive tone”.
It comes after London Mayor Sadiq Khan told Sky News that the way politics is conducted in Britain is “poisonous” and must change.
Reflecting on the death of Mrs Cox, Mr Khan said the behaviour of some of her colleagues during the referendum campaign was “not decent”.
MPs have been backing a plan to break with the usual political divisions in the House of Commons and sit together, in tribute to Mrs Cox, when Parliament reconvenes on Monday.
Tory MP Jason McCartney, who represents Colne Valley, not far from Mrs Cox’s constituency of Batley and Spen, has written to the Speaker asking for the traditional seating arrangements to be set aside.
“MPs of all parties are united in grief and admiration for Jo,” he wrote in his letter to the Speaker, John Bercow.
“Would it please be possible and break with tradition and for MPs to mix cross party on the benches on Monday to show we are united in fighting hatred.”
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