Analysis by Luke McGee, CNN
Britain was a very different place in 2006.
Tony Blair was Prime Minister, the financial crisis that would go on to devastate the global economy had yet to arrive, and a member of parliament named Boris Johnson was eyeing up a run for mayor of London as the Conservative party’s liberal, pro-European candidate.
Taking the reins as the new leader of the Conservatives after the party fell to three successive election losses, David Cameron — another pro-European — pleaded with its members to stop “banging on about Europe” and focus instead on “the things that most people care about.”
A decade later Cameron, by then the Prime Minister, put his money where his mouth was, and gambled everything on a referendum on Britain’s membership of the European Union — betting that nobody outside Westminster cared about Europe. He was wrong.
That vote — five years ago Wednesday —…