UK

Jeremy Corbyn's 'Real Fight Starts Now' Brexit Bill Tweet Leads To Total Bruising

'First rule of Real Fight Starts Now Club is turn up nine months late.'

09/02/2017 08:14 GMT | Updated 09/02/2017 11:30 GMT

Last night Theresa May won a thumping victory in the Commons as MPs voted to kickstart the process to leave the European Union by 494 to 122.

The Government now has the authority to trigger Article 50 and begin the Brexit negotiations with Brussels.

The EU (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill has been a major headache for Labour and 52 MPs rebelled against Jeremy Corbyn’s three-line whip.

Dan Kitwood via Getty Images
Jeremy Corbyn was on the receiving end of a severe bruising

Most dramatically, Clive Lewis resigned from the Shadow Cabinet, saying “in all good conscience, vote for something I believe will ultimately harm the city I have the honour to represent”.

After the vote, Corbyn attempted to rally his remaining troops with a stirring tweet and call to arms.

Unfortunately, Corbyn hasn’t had a great track record in fighting Brexit.

During the referendum campaign last year the Labour leader was heavily criticised for failing to make an adequate case for his party’s Remain position with claims close allies “sabotaged” pro-EU speeches and appearances.

As a result, what should have been a crushing blow to the Tories triggered a Labour crisis that saw mass resignations and a vote of no confidence in Corbyn.

Added to this, Labour failed to secure any amendments to the EU (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill passed on Wednesday night.

Evidently, no one has forgotten all this, not least SNP leader, Nicola Sturgeon.

The timing of the tweet was especially criticised.

 

And of course, there were many, many gifs.

There was even a hastily-prepared movie trailer.

 

Lewis’s full resignation statement reads:

“When I became the MP for Norwich South, I promised my constituents I would be ‘Norwich’s voice in Westminster, not Westminster’s voice in Norwich’. I therefore cannot, in all good conscience, vote for something I believe will ultimately harm the city I have the honour to represent, love and call home.

“It is therefore with a heavy heart that I have decided to resign from the shadow cabinet.

 “It has been a privilege to work with Jeremy Corbyn and be part of the shadow cabinet. I will continue to support our party and our leader from the back benches to the very best of my ability.”

Corbyn said of Lewis’s resignation:

“I would like to thank Clive for his work in the shadow cabinet, which has underlined what an asset he is to the Labour Party and our movement.

“I understand the difficulties MPs representing constituencies which voted Remain have in relation to the European Union Withdrawal Bill. MPs have a duty to represent their constituents as well as their party.

“However, the Labour Party respects the outcome of the EU referendum, so we have asked all Labour MPs to vote for the Bill at its third reading tonight.

“We have been clear from the start that Labour will not frustrate the triggering of Article 50, which represents the start of the process for leaving the EU.

“Labour will use every opportunity to hold the government to account and protect jobs, rights and living standards at every stage of the negotiations.

“I wish Clive well and look forward to working with him in the future.”