Labour 'Not A Remain Party Now' Says Barry Gardiner – Triggering Row Over Second Referendum Plan

Shadow trade secretary sows confusion over policy.
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Labour splits over Brexit have been exposed again after shadow international trade secretary Barry Gardiner said the party was “not a Remain party now”.

On Wednesday MPs will take part in a series of “indicative votes” to express their preference for an alternative Brexit to the one proposed by Theresa May.

One of the options on the table includes the requirement of a public vote before before ratification of any deal.

Speaking on BBC Radio 4′s Today programme, Gardiner said Labour would struggle to support a referendum that was a choice between the PM’s deal or staying in the EU.

“Our policy is clearly that we would support a public vote to stop no-deal or to stop a bad deal, but not that we would allow a bad deal as long as the public had the opportunity to reject Brexit altogether,” he said.

“That implies that you are a Remain party. The Labour Party is not a Remain party now. We have accepted the result of the referendum.”

Several pro-EU Labour MPs hit back at Gardiner’s comments and insisted it was Labour policy to support a second referendum.

Labour has yet to announce whether its MPs will be whipped to vote in certain ways on the different Brexit options available today.

Theresa May, who is facing calls to resign as the price for getting her own deal through parliament, has also not yet said whether Conservative MPs will have the whip imposed.


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