UK's Labour Party ponders supporting new Brexit referendum

Sep 24, 2018, 00:06

He told the Mirror: "What comes out of conference I will adhere to".

More than a 100 Labour constituency party offices have called for an conference vote on a second referendum and MPs, MEPs, union leaders and activists are also holding a march in support of a second vote. We could well be looking towards a general election, and - do you know what? - we're ready for it.

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In his latest comments, Mr Corbyn specified that he was not calling for another vote but conceded that if members forced a change in party policy he would respect it.

He told Sophy Ridge on Sunday: "It seems to me inconceivable that if the Labour Party conference decides that it wants a manifesto pledge on a people's vote that we would defy that decision".

Many believe that, with Theresa May's weakened position following the rejection of her Chequers proposals by European Union leaders, Labour should take the opportunity to call for the future of Brexit to be put to the British people.

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Labour is expected to discuss several motions on Brexit at its conference, and it remains unclear what the proposal on a second referendum might be - it could be a clear backing of a vote or something less black-and-white.

Later, questioned on whether Labour would be able to get the support of Conservative MPs required to trigger a vote of no confidence in the government, Corbyn added that his party would be "putting [its] case to parliament" and would "see what happens after that".

With talk of a new election swirling after Ms May's "Chequers" plan was all but shredded at an European Union summit last week, and chances of a disorderly departure that could damage the economy rising, the Opposition party is under pressure to set the Brexit agenda.

Responding to the interview, Brandon Lewis, Conservative Party Chairman, said Corbyn would take the Brexit negotiations "back to square one", adding: "Jeremy Corbyn this morning proved he is not fit to govern our country".

"He's got as much back bone as a jelly fish!" he said.

Deputy leader Tom Watson was even firmer.

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He said: 'A new poll shows 86% of Labour party members want the British people to be given a final say on the UK's future relationship with Europe.

Len McCluskey, leader of the Unite trade union, a powerful Labour ally, said British voters had made a decision to leave the EU and "for us now to enter some kind of campaign that opens up that issue again I think would be wrong".

"This government is on the verge of collapse, we could have another general election basically around Brexit".

"I think the time for vagueness is over", she said.

The rally was punctuated by cries of "stop Brexit" from the audience, but most speakers steered clear of the topic, ahead of a conference which Labour wants to focus on housing and workplace rights.

"We're not ruling out a people's vote, but there's a real risk, and I think people need to take that into account when we're arguing for one".

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