Len McCluskey: Labour government could delay Brexit to cut new deal
LIVERPOOL, England — A Labour government could delay Brexit to renegotiate a closer relationship with the EU, Len McCluskey, the party’s most influential union backer, said.
The Unite general secretary said he hopes MPs would reject Theresa May’s Brexit deal, creating a “moral imperative” for the government to hold a general election, which he predicted Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party could win.
“The only way out of this is a general election. I believe a general election would return Jeremy Corbyn as prime minister.
Article 50 could be extended and we would then cut a deal, a deal that would satisfy the 48 percent [who backed Remain] and the 52 percent [who backed Leave],”
However, McCluskey reiterated his opposition to a second referendum that would include remaining in the EU as an option.
Labour, which is meeting in Liverpool for its annual conference, is under pressure from its members to back a second referendum that could reverse the result of the 2016 vote to leave the EU.
But McCluskey said the party should “respect” the people’s decision in 2016.
A second referendum could be held if MPs reject May’s deal but the government refuses to call a general election, said McCluskey, who said the referendum question would be:
“Do you think this is a good deal: Yes or no?”
“If the people say no, we go back to the original scenario” of a general election.
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