Richard Corbett MEP: No Brexit most likely outcome

A recent article by the UK Labour Party leader in the European Parliament provides key insights into the political calculations being made by the mainstream of Labour politicians

by Patrick Sullivan, Political Editor on 26 February 2019 13:11


With Jeremy Corbyn’s announcement that the UK Labour Party was going to throw its considerable weight behind a second referendum; the odds of a so called People’s Vote being called improved considerably.

However, the punditocracy was almost entirely united in pronouncing such a prospect as dead on arrival, with Parliamentary arithmetic proving the culprit. If the path to a People’s Vote, is indeed as narrow as the cliental of Westminster’s pubs and bars think; why is the feeling, amongst Labour Parliamentarians, so optimistic that this is where the Brexit: Endgame is moving towards?

The answers can be found in article written by UK Labour Party leader in the European Parliament, Richard Corbett MEP, where he sought to answer the pressing question of “What the heck happens now?

What followed was the clearest distillation of mainstream Labour opinion on Brexit yet written. Smart Brexiteers would do well to read Mr. Corbett’s piece as it provides a window into the calculations the majority of Labour politicians are making vis a vis a second referendum.

Mr. Corbett is of the opinion that as the March 29th British departure date from the European Union looms ever closer, MPs will find their political calculus changing towards taking a position in favour of putting the final decision on Brexit back to the people. Just as many are accusing the Prime Minister Theresa May of running out the clock, in order to make passage of her Withdrawal Agreement more likely; running out the clock also works to the advantage of People’s Vote campaigners. In Mr Corbett’s words:

“Up to now, there has not been a majority for a new referendum(nor for any other outcome!) in the House of Commons, but many MPs say they would support it as a last resort, once it is clear that there is no viable route to an Alternative Deal.”

He went onto to say that he had seen polling showing the pendulum swing against leaving the EU, showing ‘Remain’ would win by 10 points. Although one might argue that there is data that shows the opposite; that both sides can point to polling that reinforces their arguments only means that they will be more steadfast in their beliefs.

Mr. Corbett continued with his explanation stating what he regarded to be one of the key reasons for this apparent popular rethink:

“any kind of Brexit will in fact mean years more negotiations & acrimony, dominating headlines and our political debates for years to come.

Most people would breath a huge sigh of relief if the whole saga ended.”

In this statement, lies the argument that would be front and centre of a Remain 2.0 campaign, which can be summed up in two words: Had Enough?

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