Ex-London mayor accused of using Brexit for personal gain

Ex-London mayor accused of using Brexit for personal gain

UK government ministers attack Boris Johnson’s ambitions and opposition figures warn Brexit is a ‘very real prospect’

LONDON (AA) – Former mayor of London Boris Johnson has been accused of putting his ambitions to become prime minister ahead of Britain’s future in the European Union.

Johnson, one of the most prominent campaigners for the U.K. to leave the EU, was attacked by senior members of his own party in a televised debate on Thursday night.

Energy Secretary Amber Rudd, who supports the EU membership, said during the program on ITV: “I fear that the only number that Boris is interested in is the one that says No 10.”

She was referring to 10 Downing Street, the official residence of the U.K. prime minister.

But Johnson argued a vote to leave the EU would release billions of pounds to be spent on domestic matters like the health service.

The clash came as senior figures in Labour, Britain’s main opposition party, admitted the outcome of the referendum was far from clear.

Former leader Ed Miliband said the party needed to do more to engage its core voter base, which risked not turning out to vote in the referendum on June 23.

He told BBC radio on Friday morning: “This referendum is in question and that's why the Labour message has got to be heard, and I think so far not enough of our voters have heard that we are for in, and for Remain, and we are for it because economically we are stronger, for workers' rights we are stronger, and tackling the problems we face in the world, we are stronger.”

Earlier Andy Burnham, the party’s home affairs spokesman, had criticized his own party’s campaigning and described Brexit as a “very real prospect”.

With less than two weeks until the referendum, opinion polls have consistently shown evenly matched support for Remain and Leave.

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