Cameron, Johnson, Farage, Evans: Why do top Brits keep quitting?

Posted at 7:04 AM, Jul 05, 2016
and last updated 2016-07-05 07:04:13-04

Britain has been hit by an epidemic of resignations, and it’s not showing any signs of stopping.

Since Prime Minister David Cameron announced he would step down in the wake of the Brexit vote, he’s been followed by a host of public figures.

Here’s a look at some of the biggest names to walk away — and those who ran.

David Cameron

Cameron was the first to go, his resignation coming after a dramatic night in Britain where the public had voted to leave the European Union.

The Prime Minister, with his wife Samantha at his side, looked emotional as he informed the watching world that he would be leaving, saying the “country requires fresh leadership.”

Cameron, who had held office for six years, said he would stay on until a successor is appointed in September.

He had sought to solve party infighting and head off the threat of the Independence Party by offering a referendum on EU membership if he won the general election. But Cameron’s decision proved fatal.

Roy Hodgson

Hodgson knew his time was up, but it didn’t save him from humiliation.

It’s a rite of passage that any England football coach who fails in a major tournament must face a public grilling. But Hodgson resigned before most had caught their breath after his team’s embarrassing 2-1 defeat by Iceland at Euro 2016.

Hodgson had been in charge of the national team for four years but his squad’s poor showing at the tournament in France was the last straw.

He won 33 of his 56 games in charge, and was out of contract at the end of the tournament anyway.

If you also throw in the fact that Wales, the only team England managed to beat at the tournament, reached the semifinals then it’s easy to see why he walked before he was pushed.

Boris Johnson

He was the face of the Brexit campaign and the favorite to the lead the nation after the Leave vote. But Johnson stunned the world when he announced he would not be pursuing the top job.

When Johnson revealed June 30 that he would not be seeking to become Prime Minister, there was shock, anger and disbelief.

Johnson was targeted on social media as voters reacted to the decision.

The former mayor of London was instead forced to step away after his fellow Brexit campaigner Michael Gove announced he would be running instead.

Gove said his decision to run for the leadership was made after concluding that Johnson “cannot provide the leadership or build the team for the task ahead.”

Nigel Farage

One of the chief campaigners for Brexit, Farage stood down as leader of the UK Independence Party after claiming his “political ambition has been achieved.”

This is not the first time the 52-year-old has resigned as leader. Last year he offered to stand aside after the general election but was urged to stay on.

Farage has been leader of UKIP for most of the past eight years, standing down briefly in 2009 and being re-elected a year later.

“I came into this struggle from business because I wanted us to be a self-governing nation, not to become a career politician,” he said. “During the referendum campaign I said I want my country back. What I’m saying today is I want my life back.”

Chris Evans

On Monday Evans took to Twitter to announce he was quitting “Top Gear,” one of the BBC’s biggest shows.

The decision comes amid declining ratings and media reports of tension between Evans and co-host Matt LeBlanc, the former “Friends” star.

Sunday’s finale episode of the car-themed series drew just 1.9 million viewers — a steep dip from the season premiere in May.

Evans took over from Jeremy Clarkson in 2015 before his time at the wheel came to an abrupt halt.

“[Chris] says he gave it his best shot, doing everything he could to make the show a success,” BBC Studios director Mark Linsey said. “He firmly believes that the right people remain on both the production team and presenting team to take the show forward and make it the hit we want it to be.”