TORY rebels have vowed to work with Jeremy Corbyn in his plot to try and shove him in No10 to stop a No Deal Brexit.
Remainer MPs including Dominic Grieve, Oliver Letwin and Caroline Spelman – along with independent Nick Boles, wrote to him this morning to open up talks.
Mr Corbyn’s plot to take power as a caretaker PM to delay Brexit again and call a fresh election has been slapped down by most of the opposition MPs – who said they will refuse to work with him.
The Liberal Democrats, Greens, SNP and Plaid all agreed they wanted to work together to stop a No Deal Brexit, but poured cold water on his demands to be installed in No10 if Boris Johnson is brought down.
New Lib Dem boss Jo Swinson said this morning that he “doesn’t command support right across the House of Commons, and he has not been much use, frankly, on the issue of Brexit”.
In her first major speech as leader she added: “If Jeremy Corbyn truly wants to succeed, surely even he can see that he cannot lead [a caretaker government]?
“There is no way he can unite MPs to stop Boris Johnson.
“We don’t have time to muck about here with people’s egos.”
She called on a long-standing grandee ike Ken Clarke or Harriet Harman to step up – who don’t want to become party leader and would be less biased.
Last night Mr Corbyn issued a rallying cry to MPs on all sides of the spectrum to help him to stop a No Deal by supporting him in a vote of no confidence.
After that he would sweep into power as a caretaker PM, immediately request an extension of Article 50 and call an election to break the Brexit deadlock.
And Labour would back a second referendum too, he added, but only after an election.
Mr Corbyn is now 3/1 favourite to succeed Boris as PM, bookies Ladbrokes revealed this morning.
We don’t have time to muck about here with people’s egos
Labour’s Rebecca Long Bailey begged Ms Swinson to think again and work together, but she dodged questions on whether Labour would allow another person to lead unity talks.
“What I would say is issue a plea to Jo Swinson particularly,” she told Radio 4.
“I know that Jo wants to avoid a no-deal situation as we do, and we think this is the simplest and most democratic way of doing that.
“This isn’t about personalities and politics. It’s not about implementing Labour policy.”
She said it was “immaterial who the leader is” and “we are saying it will be Jeremy”.
But she opened the door to the idea that someone else could lead by adding: “The question is, if not Jeremy who would it be? And how would that be determined?”
The debate soon descended into squabbling between all the different parties.
Labour MP Tulip Siddiq blasted: “The Liberal Democrats were willing to get into bed with the Conservatives for five years, but won’t join with Labour to prevent No Deal?! Are they for real?”
Leader of Independent Group for Change, Anna Soubry, who complained she didn’t get a letter from Mr Corbyn, said it was a “meaningless gesture” and he was refusing to commit to a second referendum.
The SNP’s Ian Blackford told The Sun that the “immediate priority is to remove the risk of a self-harming No Deal Brexit” – in a hint that he should go for a law to stop No Deal first.
“I believe we can construct a majority that can allow us to seize control of the agenda in Parliament and bring forward legislation to stop us falling out of the EU at the end of October,” he added.
Green MP Caroline Lucas said last night that Mr Corbyn needed to promise a second referendum after an election – and agree to step aside if he can’t get support from MPs.
She said: “If he fails to win the confidence of the House, even for a time-limited temporary Government, that he would commit to supporting an MP who can do that, then deliver the crucial letter to the EU asking for an extension of Article 50, then a People’s Vote.”
Rebels’ letter to Jeremy Corbyn
Thank you for your letter.
We agree that our common priority should be to work together in Parliament to prevent No Deal Brexit and welcome your invitation to discuss the different ways that this might be achieved.
We would be happy to meet with you as well as colleagues from other opposition parties whenever convenient in the weeks before Parliament returns.
Jeremy Corbyn’s letter to rebel MPs
Last week I wrote to the Cabinet Secretary, Mark Sedwill, for his view on how purdah rules would apply if Parliament is dissolved for a General Election campaign that straddles the Brexit date of 31st October.
I enclose a copy of his non-committal reply, which I received yesterday (13 August) and should inform our discussions.
While it is likely that the issue will be contested in the courts, our priority should be to work together in Parliament to prevent a deeply damaging No Deal being imposed on the country, denying voters the final say.
This government has no mandate for No Deal, and the 2016 EU referendum provided no mandate for No Deal. I therefore intend to table a vote of no confidence at the earliest opportunity when we can be confident of success.
Following a successful vote of no confidence in the government, I would then, as Leader of the Opposition, seek the confidence of the House for a strictly time-limited temporary government with the aim of calling a general election, and securing the necessary extension of Article 50 to do so.
In that general election, Labour will be committed to a public vote on the terms of leaving the European Union, including an option to Remain.
I would welcome the chance to discuss these proposals further with you, which I hope can halt the serious threat of No Deal, end the uncertainty and disarray, and allow the public to decide the best way ahead for our country.
Leader of the Opposition
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