Jeremy Corbyn threatens no confidence motion if Brexit deal is defeated

Labour will move a no confidence motion against the government if Theresa May’s Brexit deal is defeated again, Jeremy Corbyn has suggested.

Speaking during an interview with Sophie Ridge on Sky News yesterday, the opposition leader predicted that the prime minister would lose the vote.

“I think at that point a confidence motion would be appropriate,” Corbyn added. “At that point we should say there has to be a general election.”

Asked if a defeat on the third meaningful vote would be the trigger to launch a motion the Labour leader said: “We will obviously decide the exact moment.”

Corbyn also revealed that Labour MPs could be told to vote in favour of an amendment calling for another referendum this week.

The prime minister is expected to ask Parliament to vote on her withdrawal agreement again in the coming days after MPs rejected her deal for the second time last week.

Writing in the Sunday Telegraph, she asked MPs to make an “honourable compromise” on her deal, warning that a failure to support it would mean “we will not leave the EU for many months, if ever”.

But political commentators – and even members of May’s front bench – say it’s not clear if the third meaningful vote will go ahead.

Chancellor Philip Hammond and Trade Secretary Liam Fox both admitted yesterday that the deal could be pulled if it looks like it might be defeated.

“I am told by her close colleagues, that two conditions must be met for her to go ahead with the vote, probably on Tuesday,” says ITV’s political editor Robert Peston.

The most obvious condition that would have to be met for May to have a third shot at ratification of her deal “is that her whips, led by Julian Smith, would need to be confident that she could significantly reduce the margin of defeat or (less plausibly) actually win,” he argues.

Another one is that Northern Ireland’s DUP must say today that they have, at the last, changed their minds and have decided to vote with her, Peston says. “When I ask government members what else could mollify Northern Ireland’s main unionist party, they text me emojis of dollars bills.”


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