Almost six months on from the EU referendum, we present a mini-series on five people who helped to shape the result.
ConservativeHome banged the drum for Gisela Stuart’s appointment to a senior Vote Leave role again and again and again. She was eventually appointed its Chairman, and its co-convenor with Michael Gove.
Our calculation was that Labour supporters voters might swing it, and that Stuart was the best-qualified MP from that party to lead on the case for Brexit.
She is a knowledgeable Eurosceptic; German by origin (and thus well placed to defuse the xenophobia charge), and an older woman amidst a campaign led largely on both sides by men. Her views took shape when she was one of Britain’s Parliamentary representatives to the convention that produced the European Constitution – an experience that recast her view of the EU.
Stuart delivered everything that we had hoped, bonding with the non-Labour voices in Vote Leave, performing fluently on the media, and above all putting in two emphatic performances in TV debates.
Mind you, Matthew Elliott and Dominic Cummings didn’t really need our advice. They knew a good thing when they saw one. If the Government has its wits about it, Stuart will be offered a diplomatic role, perhaps trade-linked.