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The head of the UK’s Vote Leave campaign says Brexit talks can wait until after people “go on holiday”

AP Photo/Frank Augstein
A very European idea for a not so European campaign.
  • Jake Flanagin
By Jake Flanagin


Published Last updated This article is more than 2 years old.

Following the UK’s 52% to 48% vote to leave the European Union, Matthew Elliott, CEO of the Vote Leave campaign, sat down for an interview with CNBC, during which he was asked to walk viewers through the intended process for formally exiting the EU.

“I don’t think we need to rush this process,” he said, citing conversations among top Vote Leave leaders about how quickly to invoke article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty, which outlines how countries might withdraw from the EU. “I think quite rightly the PM has paused on that which allows the dust to settle, allows people to go away on holiday, have some informal discussions about it, and then think about it come September/October time.”

It’s quite a European idea, one might argue, for a campaign promoting a split with Europe.

Elliott reaffirmed that, contrary to pre-referendum rumors arguably stoked by the Leave campaign, it would be up to Parliament to redistribute the “£350 million a week” the National Health Service would be receiving as a result of retained EU contributions. “They will decide what happens with the negotiation, they will decide what happens to the independence dividend from leaving the EU,” he said.

He also added that he would not immediately be seeking a role with former London mayor (and Leave figurehead) Boris Johnson’s campaign to replace resigning UK prime minister David Cameron.

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