‘I knew exactly what I was voting for!’ Furious Brexit voter attacks Theo Paphitis as the Leave-backing Dragons’ Den star tells BBC Question Time audience he has changed his mind and believes it is time for a second referendum
- Theo Paphitis said he had ‘voted reluctantly Leave’ at the 2016 EU referendum
- But said he now wants a second referendum to sort Brexit out once and for all
- Told BBC’s Question Time programme it was time for everyone to ‘compromise’
- But furious Brexit voter told him ‘nothing has changed in 17.4 million people’
- Are you the person who challenged Mr Paphitis? Call MailOnline: 02036152676
Theo Paphitis sparked an angry row with a BBC Question Time audience member last night after he told Brexit voters to ‘compromise’ and back a second referendum.
The businessman who was made famous by his appearances on the Dragons’ Den TV show told the audience he had voted Leave at the 2016 EU referendum.
But he said he had now changed his mind and believed the only way out of the current Brexit impasse was to put the issue to a public vote for a second time.
He said he was willing to ‘get off my big high horse’ as he urged other voters to do the same.
His comments prompted a furious response from one Leave-voting audience member who told Mr Paphitis: ‘Nothing has changed.’
She insisted that while the panel member had changed his mind she would continue to ‘absolutely stand on my high horse’ and that she had known ‘exactly what I was voting for’ three years ago.
Mr Paphitis told the audience: ‘I know I hate myself for saying this but I am compromising and as you know I voted reluctantly Leave.
‘But I am here telling you I am prepared to get off my big high horse, take what is right for the country first, not what I originally thought, like in business when you realise things have changed you change your plan.
‘So I am for now saying right, put the election to one side, have a clear referendum, within the Bill the government have got the authority to execute the will of the people the following day.’
He added: ‘The reality is let’s get off our high horses, let’s compromise. Now everybody knows what has happened, let’s have that referendum because it has divided too many families, too many people and let’s agree that after that referendum the government execute it so there are no more referendums, no more arguments afterwards, it’s all over, then we have a proper election on the economy and things that matter after that.’
Theo Paphitis told BBC Question Time last night that people needed to compromise on Brexit and back a second referendum. His comments prompted an angry response from this audience member who told him ‘nothing has changed’ for Leave voters
Mr Paphitis said that he had voted Leave in 2016 but now believed the only way to break the Brexit impasse was to put it back to the people
The Leave-voting audience member told the Dragons’ Den star: ‘You may want to step down from your high horse but I absolutely stand on my high horse’
His remarks prompted the audience member to tell him: ‘Theo, you make some valid points but… you may want to step down from your high horse but I absolutely stand on my high horse that what I voted for three years ago, I knew exactly what I was voting for, I stick by it and I continue to stick by it.
‘Nothing has changed in my view and nothing has changed in 17.4 million people.’
Mr Paphitis then hit back and asked: ‘Can I ask you a question: Do you know what is going to happen?’
The audience member then told the businessman that ‘nobody knows what is going to happen’, prompting him to reply: ‘So we are going to jump off a rock into the sea, we don’t know how deep it is going to be…’
She responded: ‘You talked about high horses, I stay on my high horse.’
Mr Paphitis continued: ‘… but we are going to say I am sure it will be fine, we will just jump.’
The audience member then claimed ‘Remainers particularly will stick by figures and forecasts and that is what they do’ as she said nobody could predict what will happen after Brexit.
She said: ‘Nobody knows what is going to happen. When we decided, let me finish, not to join the Euro everybody thought everything would fall apart and do you know what, it didn’t.’
Mr Paphitis hit back and said: ‘If I run my business without actually calculating what is going to happen if I do this or if I do that I would go bust. I’d go bankrupt.’
The audience member then ended the exchange as she told the 60-year-old: ‘You don’t know what is going to happen.
‘The more you procrastinate and the more you do this the more uncertainty that it is causing businesses. That’s the problem.’