„Nobody has ever pretended that this will be easy. I have always said that this negotiation will be tough, complex and, at times, confrontational.“
During his statement on the progress of EU exit negotiations made in the House of Commons http://hansard.parliament.uk/commons/2017-09-05/debates/A33568F2-9C8A-448C-8042-B6F69D3227E3/EUExitNegotiations (5 September 2017). Previous contradictory statements on the ease of leaving the EU, by his colleagues in government and fellow leave campaigners, include:
The day after we vote to leave we hold all the cards and we can choose the path we want.
Michael Gove http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/michael-gove/michael-gove-vote-leave_b_9728548.html (9 April 2016)
There will continue to be free trade, and access to the single market.
Boris Johnson http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2016/06/26/i-cannot-stress-too-much-that-britain-is-part-of-europe--and-alw/ (26 June 2016)
Getting out of the EU can be quick and easy – the UK holds most of the cards in any negotiation.
John Redwood http://johnredwoodsdiary.com/2016/07/17/getting-out-of-the-eu-can-be-quick-and-easy-the-uk-holds-most-of-the-cards-in-any-negotiation/ (17 July 2016)
To me, Brexit is easy.
Nigel Farage http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/av/uk-politics-37416831/nigel-farage-outlines-three-easy-outcomes-for-brexit (20 September 2016)
The free trade agreement that we will have to do with the European Union should be one of the easiest in human history.
Liam Fox https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2017/jul/20/liam-fox-uk-eu-trade-deal-after-brexit-easiest-human-history (20 July 2017)