BREXIT REBELLION: Corbyn faces UPRISING as Labour politicians DEMAND second vote
Mr Corbyn is under fresh pressure over his party’s referendum stance with Tom Watson pushing for a more formal commitment to a fresh Brexit vote. Mr Watson took to Twitter to urge Labours to voice their opinion on a second referendum to the National Executive Committee (NEC). He posted: “Labour member or supporter? Please let your reps on the NEC know if you want them to support a confirmatory ballot on a Brexit deal in our euro manifesto.”
And 22 MEP candidates out of 70 have so far vowed in an open letter they will campaign for a fresh Brexit vote no matter what Mr Corbyn says.
Among them there are Richard Corbett and Seb Dance, respectively the current leader and deputy leader of the party in the European Parliament, and 10 more incumbent MEPs.
Andrew Lewin, the founder of the Remain Labour group, said: “Remain voters across the country who want to defeat Nigel Farage’s Brexit party can now vote with confidence and enthusiasm for Labour candidates who have pledged to fight for our future, as members of the European Union.”
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Jackie Jones, a Labour candidate for Wales who signed the pledge, added: “Now that we know more about what Brexit would mean for Wales, a confirmatory vote on any Brexit deal, with the option of staying as an EU member must be on the ballot paper.”
And piling more pressure on Mr Corbyn are union chiefs.
Three of them, Unison leader Dave Prentis, GMB boss Tim Roache and Usdaw General Secretary Paddy Lillis, want Labour campaigning for a new Brexit vote, according to PoliticsHome.
These acts of open defiance come just hours before the Parliamentary Labour Party’s weekly meeting, taking place today at 6pm, during which the Labour leadership will outline the party’s EU election manifesto, to be confirmed tomorrow with the National Executive Committee (NEC).
But Mr Corbyn is likely to stick to the policy agreed in September during the party’s conference, where the party vowed to back a second referendum only if all the other options failed.
The turmoil within the Labour Party comes as the cross-party talks between Labour and the Government resume after the Easter break.
Shadow business secretary Rebecca Long-Bailey, who will take part in the meeting, has previously hinted her party could sign up to a Brexit deal without putting it to the people if the Government made significant concessions.
But, five weeks after Mr Corbyn and Theresa May first met for their Brexit talks, the Prime Minister has been accused of not moving on any of her red lines.
One Labour frontbencher told Sky News: “I think the discussions so far have been productive, they’ve gone into a lot of detail, there seems to be a willingness on both sides to move towards some form of consensus.
“As yet we haven’t seen the Government move on any of their red lines, we’re having further discussions this week and hopefully we’ll see some movement.”
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