News | Published August 15 2019

Corbyn urges opposition leaders to back him as caretaker PM

Jeremy Corbyn has reached out to opposition party leaders and Tory rebels, asking them to back him as a "caretaker" prime minister.

The leader of the opposition said he would stop a no-deal exit from the European Union and promised to call a snap general election after securing a delay to Britain's withdrawal.

But the newly installed leader of the Liberal Democrats Jo Swinson shot down the plans, branding the proposal as “nonsense” and saying Corbyn wasn't the right person to lead a government of national unity.

Mr Corbyn said that he would table a motion of no-confidence in the government as soon as he believed it would succeed.

He added that he would delay Brexit, send the country to the polls and campaign for another referendum on EU membership.

Mr Corbyn outlined his plan in a letter, writing: “This government has no mandate for no-deal, and the 2016 EU referendum provided no mandate for no-deal.”

As well as the leaders of the main opposition parties, the letter was received by Dominic Grieve, Sir Oliver Letwin, Dame Caroline Spelman and Nick Boles - all of whom are opposed to no-deal.

Prime minister Boris Johnson has insisted he is confident he will secure a deal with the EU but said the UK must leave by October 31 “do or die”.

In response to the letter, a No 10 spokesman said: "There is a clear choice: either Jeremy Corbyn as prime minister who will overrule the referendum and wreck the economy, or Boris Johnson as prime minister who will respect the referendum and deliver more money for the NHS and more police on our streets.”

Other Tory MPs opposed to no-deal have insisted there are parliamentary means of stopping the UK from crashing out and that bringing down the government is not required.

In his first significant intervention since leaving the treasury, former chancellor Phillip Hammond said yesterday that he was “very confident” the means exist for parliament to express its view on a no-deal Brexit. 

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Authored by

Joshua Sandiford
Junior Political Editor
August 15 2019

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