Friday 30 March 2018

Labour is definitely prepared to vote down Theresa May's Brexit deal: Keir Starmer

The shadow Brexit secretary says Labour will not 'step back' from the challenge, despite fellow frontbencher suggesting the party could back the deal even if it lacked detail, writes Joe Watts Political Editor of the Independent in his exclusive story. Read on: 

Labour’s Keir Starmer has said his party is definitely prepared to vote down Theresa May’s Brexit deal, after a fellow frontbencher suggested the party might back it even if it lacks detail.

The shadow Brexit secretary said Labour would not “step back from the challenge” of opposing the agreement, following Emily Thornberry’s comments at a think tank event.

Ex-Prime Minister Tony Blair also said Labour MPs should vote against their party today, if it looks like it is going to back Brexit without knowing exactly what future relations look like.

Writing exclusively for The Independent, Mr Starmer said: “Labour will not support a deal that fails to meet the six tests I set out last year. But, we will also not allow the UK to crash out without a deal.

“The next twelve months will be pivotal for the whole Brexit process. This is not the time to step back from the challenge. It’s the time to stand up and fight for our country’s future.”

Shadow Brexit secretary Keir Starmer said Labour is willing to vote against a Tory Brexit Rex
Shadow foreign secretary Thornberry raised eyebrows on Wednesday when she said the prime minister would return with an undetailed Brexit agreement, but that it would still likely pass Labour’s six tests set out by Mr Starmer last year.

Speaking at the Chatham House foreign policy think-tank, she said the agreement will likely be a “blah, blah, blah, divorce”.

She went on: “It’s not going to make any decisions. It’s going to continue to kick things down the road. We don’t seem to have come to any difficult decisions at the moment.

“The difficultly is going to be with the meaningful vote in October, which we have secured, is that, what is it we are going to be agreeing on?”

Ms Thornberry added: “We have our six tests. If you hold up blah, blah, blah, to six tests, you’ll probably pass it.”

In an interview with The Independent, Mr Blair also raised concerns Labour could back the Government’s Brexit deal, even if it failed to really set out what the UK’s relations with Europe will look like.

Urging Labour MPs to vote against their party whip if Labour backs the Government’s deal, he said: “I think all MPs have got a responsibility to do what they think is right and that’s why what I was urging MPs to do, whether Conservative or Labour, is vote according to what you genuinely believe.

“This is the most important decision since the Second World War and it’s going to decide the destiny of the country for future generations – do what you think is right, this is one moment surely to do that.”

No comments:

Post a Comment