Welcome progress in the struggle to stop Brexit

Jo Swinson - photo copyright John Russell johnrussell zenfolio com

Photo copyright John Russell.

As I’ve emphasised before, stopping Brexit requires winning over Conservative (or DUP) rebels in Parliament. That means picking a tactic which maximises the chance of this, not one which puts them off by adding in extra conditions, such as ‘and you’ve also got to make Jeremy Corbyn Prime Minister’.

Thankfully, common sense has broken out amongst Remainers today as leaders of different parties agreed on the best route to try to stop Brexit:

Jeremy Corbyn has been forced to abandon plans to table a motion of no confidence in Boris Johnson’s government as opposition parties agreed a new strategy to stop a no-deal Brexit.

Following talks in the Labour leader’s Commons office, senior figures from the SNP, Lib Dems, Greens and Plaid Cymru said they would instead prioritise “legislative” moves to stop the UK leaving the EU on 31 October without a Withdrawal Agreement in place. [PoliticsHome]

Speaking after the meeting Jo Swinson said:

This was a positive meeting with a clear objective to stop the nightmare that is no-deal Brexit, which the Government have admitted will lead to medicine and food shortages.

I am pleased the meeting focused on a legislative route which we have agreed is the best way forward and are now looking at all the scenarios to deliver this. There will be further meetings over the next few days across all groups in Parliament.

There is clear understanding that Boris Johnson is a Prime Minister who is prepared to rob both the people and Parliament of a say over a no-deal Brexit.

The Liberal Democrats will continue to pursue what we believe is the best future for our country which is to stop Brexit and remain in the European Union.

She then joined with politicians from other parties to sign the Church House Declaration, standing up for Parliament’s right to hold the government to account:

Boris Johnson was described as a threat to the very nature of British democracy at a cross party meeting of MPs who signed a pledge to an alternative parliament in the event of the prime minister shutting down parliament to make a no deal Brexit happen.

In a highly symbolic gathering in Church House, where MPs met during the second world war, Labour’s John McDonnell took to the stage alongside the former Conservative MP, Anna Soubry, as well as the Liberal Democrat leader Jo Swinson and Caroline Lucas of the Green Party. [The Guardian]

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