HUFFINGTON POST

Where The UK's Major Brexit Players Stand After The Referendum

Leading British politicians are facing resignations and chaos after the vote.
Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron and Boris Johnson sit on an underground train as they head to Westminster after local
Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron and Boris Johnson sit on an underground train as they head to Westminster after local election campaigning in 2014. 

Days after the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union, leading British politicians face infighting with their parties, anger from voters and confusion over what their future holds. The political chaos of Brexit has now left what Scotland's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon called "a vacuum of leadership" in Britain. 

The Brexit vote has already caused Prime Minister David Cameron to resign, opening up a battle for who will take over the Conservative Party. Over the weekend, the opposition Labour Party also descended into turmoil as a number of prominent party members revolted against leader Jeremy Corbyn. 

While the "remain" side deals with an expected backlash from their loss, leaders of the victorious "leave" camp are also coming under fire amid economic crisis and accusations of broken promises. Former London Mayor Boris Johnson and U.K. Independence Party leader Nigel Farage have both been on the defensive in the wake of the vote, as many of the warnings regarding Brexit's effect on the economy come to fruition.

Here's a roundup of where the United Kingdom's major Brexit campaigners now stand after the referendum.

Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron speaks after Britain voted to leave the European Union.
Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron speaks after Britain voted to leave the European Union.

David Cameron

Cameron promised the referendum during last year's election as a way to stave off pressure from UKIP and quell dissenting voices from within his conservative party. This gamble proved to be a disaster for the prime minister, who fervently backed the losing "remain" camp. Cameron announced on Friday he would resign by October -- setting the stage for a leadership battle for who will be the country's next PM. 

In the short term, Cameron remains as the country's prime minister and will oversee some of the preparations for Brexit. On Monday, he announced to parliament that the government would form a special unit of government workers to provide recommendations of how to exit the EU. 

Cameron has made clear that he will not be the one to handle the process of Brexit, however, and has refrained from triggering Article 50 of the EU's Lisbon treaty that initiates a two-year negotiation period for Britain to leave the union. The prime minister also ruled out the possibility of a second referendum, after an online petition to hold another vote gained significant media attention.

Jeremy Corbyn (L) walks to attend a meeting at the House of Commons. Corbyn has been embattled over the weekend from infighti
Jeremy Corbyn (L) walks to attend a meeting at the House of Commons. Corbyn has been embattled over the weekend from infighting within the Labour Party.

Jeremy Corbyn

Opposition Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn is currently grappling with serious challenges to his leadership, after a revolt from within his party over the weekend. A number of Labour MPs are openly criticizing Corbyn for refusing to do more to support the "remain" campaign during the lead-up to the referendum, some going as far as to call his actions "sabotage" and demand he step down. 

At least 19 members of the party have resigned from Corbyn's shadow ministry team since the vote, and shadow foreign secretary Hilary Benn was fired. Corbyn lost a no-confidence vote on Tuesday, as Labour Party opponents mounted an effort to oust him from the party's top job. 

Corbyn refused to resign following the no-confidence measure, which is non-binding but shows he faces a huge lack of parliamentary support. Pressure further increased on Wednesday, as Prime Minister David Cameron berated Corbyn in parliament for not resigning and told the Labour leader "for heaven's sake man, go."

The stage is now set for a formal leadership contest, wherein Labour MPs and MEPs will nominate an alternative to Corbyn. Labour MP Angela Eagle is expected to run against Corbyn for control of the party, the BBC reported

The leftist Corbyn has had a contentious relationship with many Labour Party politicians since he was elected last year, which the fallout from Brexit has pushed to a boiling point. On Monday, Corbyn spoke to a rally of supporters in London's Parliament Square to call for unity in the party, while allies pledged to ensure he stayed on as leader.

Scotland's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon leaves after voting in the EU referendum. Sturgeon has been one of the few leaders
Scotland's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon leaves after voting in the EU referendum. Sturgeon has been one of the few leaders of the "remain" camp to avoid heated criticism.

Nicola Sturgeon

Scotland's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has been one of the few politicians in either the "remain" or the "leave" camps to come out after the referendum with something of a plan in place, as well as support from her party. Sturgeon has vowed to keep Scotland in the European Union and says she will talk to officials in Brussels about ways to make that happen.

Scots voted overwhelmingly to stay in the EU during the Brexit referendum, and many in the country have since expressed their anger that Scotland will be pulled out of the union against its will. Sturgeon may push for a second Scottish independence referendum that would allow the country to remain in the EU while breaking away from the United Kingdom.

Polls in the wake of the Brexit vote show a surge in support for Scotland's independence, though a referendum in 2014 saw the majority of the country reject the idea. 

Sturgeon has also floated the notion that Scottish parliament could potentially veto the Brexit decision and challenge the referendum on a constitutional basis.

Former London mayor and Brexit campaigner Boris Johnson. He campaigned vocally for the "leave" camp, and may become the next
Former London mayor and Brexit campaigner Boris Johnson. He campaigned vocally for the "leave" camp, and may become the next prime minister.

Boris Johnson

Former mayor of London Boris Johnson was a prominent face of the "leave" campaign, and now stands as a favorite to succeed David Cameron as prime minister. In the wake of the vote, however, it has become evident that Johnson and the anti-EU camp lack a cohesive plan to implement Brexit.

On Monday, Johnson's promise that the United Kingdom would retain access to the EU's single market even after it left the bloc appeared to be shot down. Such a notion is a "pipe dream," according to EU diplomats speaking to The Guardian. EU leaders also stated on Monday that there will be no informal talks on Brexit before Britain invokes Article 50, countering Johnson's claims that there was no rush to start the process.

Johnson has been largely out of the public eye in the wake of the vote, staying at his house in the countryside and writing an opinion piece for Britain's The Telegraph that pledged "Britain is a part of Europe, and always will be." In the piece, Johnson also denied that immigration anxieties played a leading role in why "leave" won the vote, despite using anti-immigration rhetoric during the campaign.

Nigel Farage leaves Milbank TV studios after the UK voted by 52 percent to 48 percent to leave the Europe
Nigel Farage leaves Milbank TV studios after the UK voted by 52 percent to 48 percent to leave the European Union.

Nigel Farage

UKIP leader Nigel Farage was a controversial and outspoken presence for the "leave" campaign, at times garnering condemnation from both sides for his scare-mongering and xenophobic attitudes toward immigration. Following the Brexit vote, however, Farage has had to walk back some of his claims and attempt to reframe the economic crisis facing Britain.

On Sunday, Farage denied that the drop in British currency's value and dire forecasts for the future of the U.K. economy were the result of Brexit.

A much-circulated video the day after the vote featured Farage walking back the "leave" campaign's prominent claim that the U.K. could spend 350 million pounds a week on the national health service if it left the EU and didn't have to pay dues to the union.

"It was one of the mistakes I think that the 'leave' campaign made," Farage said on "Good Morning Britain."

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