Labour deputy demands backing for Brexit referendum 

Labour deputy demands backing for Brexit referendum 

The UK’s opposition Labour Party must return the issue of Brexit to the electorate in a people’s vote and make the case for remaining in the European Union, according to deputy leader Tom Watson. 

The macho candidates to become prime minister in the Conservative Party are, meanwhile, lurching towards a no-deal Brexit.  

He said being part of Europe was an “emotional issue”,  despite the Euroscepticism of his leader Jeremy Corbyn amid the danger of a no-deal Brexit.

The party is addressing its ill-defined Brexit policy in the wake of Labour’s poor performance May’s European election and mounting pressure on Corbyn to reflect the overwhelmingly pro-remain sentiments of the party members.

The leftist Corbyn still talks about negotiating his own Brexit agreement with Brussels after winning power, despite refusals from across the channel to reopen talks. Corbyn is currently saying that any Brexit deal would have to be put to a “public vote”, although this might be in the form of a general election. Many pro-EU campaigners shudder at the prospect of the longtime critic of the bloc again leading the remain campaign ahead of a people’s vote.  

Ian Lavery, the Labour chairman and one of Corbyn’s most vocal allies, condemned supporters of a people’s vote last month as “left-wing intellectuals” who sneered at “ordinary people”.

Watson criticised those who had “begun to equate support for Europe with class identity”, adding: “I don’t think that’s right or helpful. The majority of Labour people are supportive of Europe. And that support is not dictated by social class.”

Watson said: “Our members are remain. Our values are remain. Our hearts are remain. We must bring the public back into this decision and we must argue strongly to remain in Europe.”

“Our future doesn’t need to be Brexit. We can change our future. But only if Labour makes the case for it – and we must.”

Economic impact 

The UK’s growth is expected to slow to the lowest levels since the financial crisis as firms run down Brexit stockpiles, according to the British Chambers of Commerce. 

After a stockpiling rush this year that stimulated growth, the rate would slow in 2020 and 2021, the lobby group said. 

The organisation has cut its GDP growth forecast for next year to just 1 per cent, from 1.3 per cent, marking the weakest expansion in the economy since 2009. 

The economy benefited as companies braced for a no-deal Brexit ahead of the original deadline of March 29, before the delay until October 31. 



Leavers are always angry. Picture credit: Eurasia Times 




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