Labour eye nuclear option over no-deal Brexit
PUBLISHED: 19:00 19 November 2018
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Labour could attempt to bring down the government in a desperate bid to foil a no-deal Brexit, Sir Keir Starmer has warned.
The shadow Brexit secretary told the Parliamentary Labour Party (PLP) he would work with MPs from across the Commons to halt a damaging hard Brexit.
He added that Labour would use any parliamentary measures at its disposal, including tabling a motion of no confidence in Theresa May’s flagging government.
If such a motion passed, a new government would have to be formed within 14 days and win a confidence vote in the House of Commons.
If the new administration could not do so then there would be a general election.
Sir Keir told the PLP: “The deal the prime minister has brought back is a miserable failure of negotiation. It falls far short of a deal Labour could support.
“If Theresa May’s deal fails to command the support of parliament, then we will not stand back and allow her to take this country off a cliff.
“No deal is not an option. Labour will not countenance no deal – and nor would many of the prime minister’s own MPs.
“It would be politically unsustainable for any government to deliver a no deal without the consent of parliament.
“There will be opportunities to make the majority against no deal heard. Motions will be tabled, amendments will be pressed and a no-confidence vote can be triggered.
“And let me be clear: Labour will work with all sides to make that happen.”
The opposition could use the passage of legislation required in advance of Brexit to table amendments aimed at ruling out a no-deal departure.
Labour could also use the time it is allocated for opposition day debates to attempt to win support for its position.