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Jeremy Corbyn allies deny he is preparing to back a People’s Vote

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Jeremy Corbyn BrexitGetty

  • A new report suggests Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn is
    preparing to back a second Brexit referendum if May’s deal is
    defeated.
  • However, sources close to Corbyn deny that he
    imminently plans to back another vote.
  • One source close to Corbyn told Business Insider on
    Tuesday: “I’d steer you well away from this.”
  • Labour officially remains open to another vote if all
    other options fail.
  • The campaign for a “People’s Vote” believe Labour’s
    support is key to achieving one.

LONDON — ITV’s Robert Peston has published an interesting

blog post
this afternoon suggesting that Jeremy Corbyn is
preparing to back a second Brexit referendum if and when Theresa
May’s Brexit deal is defeated in the Commons.

He writes: “According to senior Labour sources, Corbyn is close
to agreeing that shortly (days) after the loss of the meaningful
vote by May, he would formally make his party the champion of
another referendum or People’s Vote — on the basis that if there
is no consensus in parliament on what comes next, the question
has to go back to the people.”

However, the claim has been met with incredulity by those around
Corbyn who insist that the Labour leader’s priority remains
seeking a general election if May’s deal falls.

One source close to Corbyn told Business Insider on Tuesday: “I’d
steer you well away from this.”

There are senior Labour figures, in particular deputy Labour
leader Tom Watson, who would like the leadership to back a
People’s Vote.

But while Corbyn has publicly said that the possibility of
another referendum will remain “on the table,” privately his team
are a long way from being convinced that he should ever be the
one leading the charge for one.

As a source close to Corbyn
told me earlier this year:
“If there has to be a second
referendum at some point then let Theresa May call for it and
take the hit from furious Leave voters.”

These are unpredictable times, and the consensus in Parliament
and the Labour leadership may well switch towards a People’s Vote
if all other parliamentary and electoral processes run out of
road.

However, the claim that Corbyn is about to lead the charge for a
second vote within the next few weeks seems unlikely.

Our Brexit Insider Facebook group is the best place for up-to-date news and analysis about Britain’s departure from the EU, direct from Business Insider’s political reporters. Join here.

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