Clive Lewis backs Labours move to support second European Union referendum

Despite her confirmation, it is still not clear conditions would be put on a second referendum or even whether the choice to remain would be given.

In the most significant step towards a new vote on Brexit, the Labour leader said he was committed to "putting forward or supporting an amendment in favour of a public vote to prevent a damaging Tory Brexit being forced on the country".

At a weekly party meeting this evening, Corbyn is expected to also confirm Labour will back a cross-party effort led by lawmakers Yvette Cooper and Oliver Letwin to prevent the United Kingdom crashing out of the European Union on March 29.

Labour will back an attempt to block a no-deal Brexit and put forward or support an amendment in favour of a public vote to prevent a "damaging Tory Brexit", Jeremy Corbyn will announce.

Insiders told HuffPost UK that the announcement was a "shift" because it would be the first time that Labour committed to actively supporting a second referendum if its own alternative Brexit plans failed to get approved in the Commons this week.

Asked about it yesterday, frontbencher Barry Gardiner said: "There has been a helpful amendment from Phil Wilson and Peter Kyle but actually, unfortunately, that would mean focusing on support for the Prime Minister's deal".

Corbyn said he would work to force May to adopt his party's approach to Brexit, which includes a permanent customs union with the EU (a major sticking point between the pro- and anti-Brexit sides), a close alignment with the single market and unambiguous agreements on future security arrangements.

"There's no turning back for Jeremy now", Kyle said.

Parliament is not expected to back Labour's Brexit plan. Corbyn is more anti-EU than his party, the membership of which backs a second referendum.

Reaction from lawmakers in the meeting on Monday was split.

Mr Tusk said delaying the UK's withdrawal is now a "rational solution", warning that the only alternative if MPs can not agree a deal is "a chaotic Brexit".

"We're working with them to see if we can have a re-draft of that amendment which people could vote for, and I think there's a high possibility we could", he told BBC Radio 5 Live's Pienaar's Politics.

"I still have deep reservations about the idea of having another referendum".

A YouGov poll in January commissioned by the People's Vote campaign but conducted independently suggested 47 percent of the public backed a new vote.

"We have voted against the deal because it didn't meet our tests".

  • Joey Payne