Clive Lewis: ‘No ifs, no buts, on Brexit public vote’

PUBLISHED: 11:08 12 April 2019 | UPDATED: 11:08 12 April 2019

MP Clive Lewis. PICTURE: Jamie Honeywood

MP Clive Lewis. PICTURE: Jamie Honeywood

Jamie Honeywood Archant Norwich Norfolk

Compromise is a good thing in politics.

The Brexit process has been defined by politicians failing to back down or coalesce around a way forward. But as crisis talks between the two main parties drag on, there’s one thing the Labour leadership mustn’t compromise on.

Any Brexit deal passed through parliament must be ratified by a public vote - this has to be the bottom line of negotiations, no ifs no buts.

The Labour Party is offering a vision of hope which has inspired millions of people to join the movement.

But Brexit threatens all the progress we’ve made - as does any perceived participation in helping the Tories deliver it.

That’s why last week, as part of the Love Socialism Hate Brexit group of MPs, I signed a letter urging my party’s leadership not to bail the prime minister out of this Tory-induced mess.

Brexit is the product of decades of Conservative Party infighting on Europe. But its effects will be felt by us all.

It’s not Labour’s job to resurrect Theresa May’s failed Brexit strategy.

Our job is to protect the working people of this country from falling wages, lost jobs, less rights and further austerity.

Thankfully, I don’t see Jeremy Corbyn coming to the Prime Minister’s rescue. He is a leader who makes sure Labour voters and members are listened to.

And with Best for Britain polling showing that 80pc of Labour voters want a final say, their voice is now impossible to ignore.

The party has come a long way on this issue, and must stand firm on its commitment to back a public vote.

A confirmatory public vote became democratically established policy, passed at Party conference last year and consolidated through Labour’s whipping in favour of the Kyle-Wilson proposal in the Commons.

Any form of Brexit damages jobs, communities, industry and our economy. Helping the prime minister to deliver a Brexit compromise would be a leap in the dark, when we know the crucial negotiations on our future relationship would end up in the hands of a future Tory leader who won’t be bound by her promises.

That’s why I will continue the fight alongside my Labour colleagues to give the people the final say on Brexit.

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