Why are Brexiteers voting for ex-Remainer Truss?

Liz Truss campaigned to stay in the EU. Credit: PA

Rishi Sunak and Penny Mordaunt were both committed Brexiteers in the 2016 referendum campaign who both took career risks to support leaving the EU, against the wishes of then PM David Cameron.

By contrast, Liz Truss campaigned enthusiastically to stay in the EU (see for example this forceful speech to the 2016 Food and Drink Industry dinner where she makes a powerful industrial case for staying in the EU).

It is striking therefore that Steve Baker and Suella Braverman (supported by disenfranchised Lord Frost) prefer the zeal of the after-the-event convert to Brexit, namely Ms Truss, to the other candidates who were always Brexiteers.

And the question for Truss is why and how she changed her position so far and so much on the pretty compelling case she made in 2016 for the EU’s single market, as follows: “I think we’ve got to be very careful about taking that Single Market for granted and being outside that Single Market.

"The Single Market isn’t something like a sexy, exciting thing to explain; but it’s really crucial to the amount of growth we’ve seen in food and drink exports over the past forty years.

"It is really crucial to that”.

Truss hoped then for an “in vote”, but now implies that was a terrible mistake, without explaining quite what she misunderstood.