Former Prime Minister Tony Blair has said he is ready to “get [his] hands dirty” again and return to politics. His declaration comes after months of openly backing anti-Brexit campaigns, supporting tactical voting in the general election, and insisting a “hard Brexit” without Free Movement must be stopped.
Speaking to The Mirror to mark 20 years since the New Labour prime minister came to office, Blair said it was the British people’s vote to leave the European Union (EU) on 23 June 2016 that provoked him to return after a decade out of politics.
“This Brexit thing has given me a direct motivation to get more involved in politics,” he said and called Brexit, the largest political mandate in British history, a “pessimistic decision”.
“You need to get your hands dirty and I will,” he said.
The globalist former prime minister has already lent his support to Open Britain’s tactical voting offensive which aims to unseat Brexit-supporting MPs at the general election in a bid to sabotage Britain’s exit from the EU.
He has also committed £9.3 million of proceeds from his lobbying business to setting up a new institute to fight populism. In December 2016, the pro-Remain politician said he was creating the Tony Blair Institute (TBI) aimed at “making globalisation work”. He said the TBI would be a “platform” offering “thought leadership” on anti-populist, pro-globalisation policies.
During the interview, Blair insisted he has not set out to defy the will of the 52 per cent of British people who voted Leave – despite urging pro-EU supporters to “rise up” against Brexit.
“This is not about defying the will of the people,” he stated. “It is saying the will of the people may change when they see the final deal.”
Blair has insisted that Britons will change their mind on Brexit, and is adamant that any deal which does not include full participation in the Single Market and its associated Free Movement regime will be “a choice between bad and downright ugly”. Mr. Blair has been accused of presiding over a “silent conspiracy” to flood the UK with migrants whilst he was prime minster, ordering his ministers to not discuss the subject in public.
The Mirror interviewer indicated that Blair’s political ambition extends beyond Brexit, with the former prime minister confirming he is looking to take “an active part… in shap[ing] the policy debate” nationally.
“We live in a world defined by change. There are cultural stresses, people are worried about immigration, the way their communities have changed, economic stresses, people are worried about the quality of their job… whether they will have a job.
“I am going to be taking an active part in trying to shape the policy debate and that means getting out into the country and reconnecting.”
“It is not frontline politics in the sense I am not standing for parliament,” he said.
“I am not sure I can turn something into a political movement but I think there is a body of ideas out there people would support.”
Amidst comparisons made between the former prime minister and globalist French presidential candidate Emmanuel Macron, Blair has denied he was interested in starting a Macronesque En Marche! political movement.