Corbyn will back second referendum if party support it, despite personal opposition
Jeremy Corbyn came out against a second referendum on Brexit, but promised that he would comply with the opinion of the majority of his party, which is holding its conference in Liverpool.
“I do not call for a new referendum,” the opposition leader said in an interview with the Sunday Mirror tabloid.” The best way to solve this situation is to convene legislative elections,” he added, while stating that “if conference makes a decision I will not walk away from it and I will act accordingly”.
He announced that a vote on the matter would be held before the end of the conference, which runs until Wednesday, but stressed that the question that would be submitted to party members had not yet been agreed upon.
A YouGov poll for The Observer, the results of which were released on Sunday, shows that 86 percent of Labour members support a referendum on the final outcome of the Brexit negotiations, while 8 percent oppose it.
Several MPs and some of the party’s top figures, including London mayor Sadiq Khan, have already voiced their support for a new consultation, for which the TUC Trade Union Confederation is also fighting.
Corbyn’s comments come days after Theresa May’s “humiliation” at an EU meeting in Salzburg where key elements of her Chequers plan were rejected by her European counterparts.
Nearly as unpopular with her own party as it is in EU capitals, some 40 Conservative rebels have said they will vote against Mrs May’s Brexit plans in the House of Commons vote on the final deal.
Should the prime minister suffer a major parliamentary defeat it could trigger a general election in the autumn, a prospect welcomed by Labour, but rubbished by Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab who told the BBC: “It’s not going to happen. Downing Street has made [that] very clear.”