Eurosceptic newspapers pumped out misleading Brexit stories throughout the referendum. Now they are writing about the dangers ahead and often saying things they had disputed during the campaign – without so much as blinking an eye.
Balanced economic reporting from the Express
As the stock market took another hit on Monday, the Express published an uncharacteristically impartial article headlined: “How has Brexit affected the pound?”
“Analysts expect months of economic and political turmoil,” the Express reported – seamlessly transforming “Project Fear” into Project Reality.
The Express doesn’t make the long-term outlook seem great either. “Britain’s economy would grow more slowly outside the EU than if it stayed in.” The paper cites projections from “the government, the [Bank of England], think-tanks, international organisations and hundreds of academics” – the experts the Leave camp warned against during the campaign. The previously gospel opinions of Economists for Brexit – now described as “a small group of pro-Brexit economists” – are relegated down the article.
Sun suddenly worried about travel rights
The day after the vote, The Sun asked what will happen to our EU passports, warning: “UK citizens will soon lose the right to live and work in EU nations following the historic vote for Brexit.”
Despite asserting just days ago that voters should “BeLeave in Britain”, The Sun started outlining desperate measures to reclaim EU citizenship. For example, you might be “lucky enough” to have Irish parents. “The next possible route to an EU passport is marriage,” continues the erstwhile campaigner against sham marriages. Or you could just “buy your way in to EU nationality”, it concludes, despite slamming the sale of citizenship earlier this month.
Telegraph suggests EU will “treat Britain like Greece”
The Telegraph’s editorial declaring for Brexit offered hope over fear: “The Remainers have sought to scare the nation into believing that calamity lies in wait for an independent Britain. They imply that our trade would collapse even though we import far more from the EU than they buy from us and our biggest markets are outside the EU.”
A post-referendum analysis by the paper’s Brussels correspondent was less optimistic. “Britain’s service economy will be cut up like an old car,” writes Matthew Holehouse. In fact, Holehouse believes we’re in a worse position than Greece. “(Greek PM) Tsipras had a number of cards to play,” Holehouse explains, but “no such goodwill exists for Britain”. Furthermore, “we do not control this process”. Wasn’t there a Leave slogan promising the exact opposite?
Daily Mail concerned about Calais migrants coming to Britain
The eurosceptic press were quick to denounce claims by David Cameron that France would scrap border control treaties after Brexit, because the agreement was made outside the EU.
But the Daily Mail now seems less confident, in the face of renewed calls to scrap the Le Touquet Treaty. The newspaper writes: “While Britain’s EU membership should theoretically have no impact on the treaty, France’s Socialist-led cabinet insists it will have big consequences for Franco-British relations.” Which was pretty much what Cameron was saying during the campaign.
Edited by Hugo Dixon