Boris Johnson arrives in Brussels for final Brexit talks
The Prime Minister met Ursula von der Leyen on Wednesday night in order to break the current Brexit deadlock. If the two sides agree a trade deal, the Prime Minister will bring it back to Parliament for MPs to vote on. Ahead of that, some within the Shadow Cabinet have warned the party must not support any deal brought back to the Commons by the Prime Minister.
During Prime Minister’s Question on Wednesday, the leader of the Opposition indicated Labour may support the deal amid his concerns over the damage of a no deal Brexit.
Amid the potential split within the party, Express.co.uk is asking readers in today’s exclusive poll, “Should Keir Starmer force the Labour Party to back Boris’s Brexit deal?”
MPs such as Shadow Chancellor Anneliese Dodds and Shadow Trade Secretary Emily Thornberry, are thought to be anxious over supporting a deal, The Guardian reports.
However, influential MPs such as Hilary Benn and West Streeting are now in favour of voting for any deal Mr Johnson presents to the Commons.
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Stella Creasy, the MP for Walthamstow, said: “With the government’s majority the size that it is, the choice Labour faces is whether we endorse Boris’s deal or not.
“For me to want to support any deal he makes it has to meet the needs of the British people on security, jobs protection, trade and climate change – without seeing it no one can judge if it does that and time is running out.”
Sir Keir said today: “I’ll say this: if there is a deal, and I hope there’s a deal, then my party will vote in the national interest – not on party political lines, as he is doing.”
As well as avoiding a no deal Brexit, Sir Keir is also attempting to win back Labour voters who voted to Leave in 2016.
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Due to the party’s Brexit position in the lead up to the 2019 general election, the party lost heartland seats in the North and Midlands.
In the party’s manifesto, it promised to negotiate a Brexit deal within three months of the election before then holding a referendum on the deal.
In order to reclaim these voters, Sir Keir may see support for a Brexit as an opportunity to repair bridges with Leave voters.
Despite this possible plan for the Labour Party, Mr Johnson is yet to agree a deal with the EU.
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EU leaders have become increasingly concerned over the lessening time for any possible deal to be ratified by MEPs.
Due to its nature, national governments will also need to ratify the agreement, although it is thought officials could postpone this procedure in order for it to be implemented in time.
The EU’s coordination group is now looking at changing the legislative timeline for this reason.
Ahead of his trip on Wednesday evening, Mr Johnson had declared belief a deal could be done.
He said: “Our friends in the EU are currently insisting that if they pass a new law in the future with which we in this country do not comply or don’t follow suit, then they want the automatic right to punish us and to retaliate.
“Secondly, they are saying that the UK should be the only country in the world not to have sovereign control over its fishing waters.
“I don’t believe that those are terms that any prime minister of this country should accept.”
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