Jeremy Corbyn calls for general election over Brexit 6 days ago

Jeremy Corbyn calls for general election over Brexit

Labour's leader says Theresa May will lose the right to govern when her deal is voted down by MPs

Jeremy Corbyn has called for a general election in order to "break the deadlock" on Brexit. He also effectively denied Labour would pursue a second referendum, instead preferring to renegotiate an exit deal and perhaps extending Article 50 to facilitate that.

Corbyn said a new government would be able to negotiate a better withdrawal agreement with a fresh mandate.

Delivering a speech at an electrical products manufacturer in Wakefield, West Yorkshire, on Thursday, Labour's leader said: "So I say to Theresa May: if you are so confident in your deal then call that election and let the people decide.

"If not, Labour will table a motion of no confidence in the government at the moment we judge it to have the best chance of success."

WAKEFIELD, ENGLAND - JANUARY 10: Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn delivers a speech to members of the media where he outlined Labour's approach to Brexit at the OE Electrics manufacturing factory on January 10, 2019 in Wakefield, England. The speech and q&a session came ahead of the Meaningful Vote on Theresa May’s Brexit deal that is scheduled to take place next Tuesday. (Photo by Ian Forsyth/Getty Images) Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn delivers a speech at the OE Electrics manufacturing factory on January 10, 2019 in Wakefield (Credit: Ian Forsyth)

Corbyn also admitted Labour was not capable of bringing down Theresa May by itself.


There is not really a clear route for collapsing the government with the party acting alone. So if they're unable to secure that general election, Mr Corbyn said all options were "on the table, including the option of campaigning for a public vote."

An excerpt of his speech read: "Let there be no doubt: Theresa May’s deal is a bad deal and Labour will vote against it next week in parliament.

"If the government cannot pass its most important legislation, then there must be a general election at the earliest opportunity. A government that cannot get its business through the House of Commons is no government at all. So I say to Theresa May: if you are so confident in your deal, call that election, and let the people decide.

"To break the deadlock an election is not only the most practical option, it is also the most democratic option. It would give the winning party a renewed mandate to negotiate a better deal for Britain and secure support for it in Parliament and across the country.

"For both sides, the EU referendum was about so much more than our relationship with our biggest trading partner and its rules. It was about what’s happened to our people over decades and how to build a better future.

"The need for a government with a clear purpose and direction for the country could not be more urgent. Labour stands ready to bring leave and remain voters together to rebuild Britain for the many, not the few."

Theresa May's government was beaten twice during Brexit votes in the space of two days. First, financial powers in the event of a no deal exit were limited by MPs, then they ensured the prime minister would have to announce a Plan B within three days of her deal falling in the Commons.