Wed, 23 June 2021

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By Georgina Bailey, Eleanor Langford and Kate Proctor
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Theresa May tells of her 'frustration' at 'entrenched' Brexit views as she prepares to depart Number 10

Theresa May tells of her 'frustration' at 'entrenched' Brexit views as she prepares to depart Number 10
2 min read

Theresa May has spoken of her "frustration" at not being able to secure a Brexit deal in her final television interview as Prime Minister.​


Speaking in her Downing Street flat, Mrs May told the BBC's Laura Kuenssberg that while she was "immensely proud" of what she had accomplished during her time in Number 10, "there was more that I wanted to do".

The outgoing Prime Minister said she had assumed MPs would be "eager to get Brexit over the line" - but was left frustrated as views on both sides of the Leave/Remain divide hardened.  

MPs "got so sort of entrenched that they just were not willing to make that compromise that would enable us to get the majority to get this through," Mrs May said.

She added: "I actually think there's quite a difference between Parliament and the public. I think the public have got a very simple view. A decision was taken - just get on with it - and they are not in that same polarised way that Parliament has been about this issue."

Reflecting on the disastrous 2017 General Election campaign that cost her her Commons majority, Mrs May said she regretted "running a campaign that wasn't really me".

And she conceded it had been a mistake not to take part in a television debate.

The PM said that despite the focus on Brexit, she was proud to have been "championing some causes that otherwise will be unfashionable" whilst in Downing Street.

Mrs May, who will remain as an MP, refused to be drawn on whether she is backing Boris Johnson or Jeremy Hunt to succeed her.

She will step down on 23 July, with her successor taking over the next day.

Read the most recent article written by Charlotte Henry - Late to the party: the new band of Lib Dem MPs

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