Jeremy Corbyn hints that Labour will try to force second referendum on Boris Johnson Brexit deal

Posted On: 
17th October 2019

Jeremy Corbyn has hinted that Labour will support a referendum taking place on the Brexit deal struck between the UK and EU.

Jeremy Corbyn said Labour would not back Boris Johnson's Brexit deal
Credit: 
PA Images

The Labour leader said "the best way to get Brexit sorted is to give the people the final say in a public vote".

However, it remains unclear whether Labour MPs will be whipped to support any amendment calling for a referendum when the Commons sits on Saturday.

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Mr Johnson announced that he had secured “a great new deal that takes back control” shortly before the start of a crunch EU summit.

It comes despite the DUP - whose MPs’ support is likely to be crucial to Mr Johnson's hopes of getting the deal through Parliament - saying they still cannot support it.

Reacting to confirmation that a deal had been agreed, Mr Corbyn said: “From what we know, it seems the Prime Minister has negotiated an even worse deal than Theresa May’s, which was overwhelmingly rejected.”

“These proposals risk triggering a race to the bottom on rights and protections: putting food safety at risk, cutting environmental standards and workers’ rights, and opening up our NHS to a takeover by US private corporations.

“This sell out deal won’t bring the country together and should be rejected. The best way to get Brexit sorted is to give the people the final say in a public vote.”

Liberal Democrat leader Jo Swinson reiterated her party’s support for a second referendum, and opposition to the latest deal.

She said: "The fight to stop Brexit is far from over.

"Boris Johnson’s deal would be bad for our economy, bad for our public services, and bad for our environment.

"The next few days will set the direction of our country for generations, and I am more determined than ever to stop Brexit.

"When this deal comes to Parliament we will use every possible opportunity to give the public a People’s Vote on the Brexit deal that includes the option to remain in the European Union."

Following the announcement, the EU’s chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier said: “Discussions over the past days have at times been difficult but we have delivered and we have delivered together."

"We finally have a fair and reasonable basis for an ordered withdrawal of the UK, it’s much better than a disordered withdrawal and above all we hope that as of the 1 November we can start working on a new partnership with the UK."

Mr Johnson said: "We’ve got a great new deal that takes back control — now Parliament should get Brexit done on Saturday so we can move on to other priorities like the cost of living, the NHS, violent crime and our environment."