A former Tory – and a current one – have already signed on to support Jeremy Corbyn’s plan to stop Boris Johnson’s “no deal” Brexit.
Mr Corbyn has written to opposition party leaders in the House of Commons, along with key Conservatives, calling on them to support an early vote of “no confidence” in September, followed by a short-term Corbyn-led government whose purpose is solely to stop “no deal” Brexit and call a general election.
We already know that the Scottish National Party has said it will support the plan – if Mr Corbyn can demonstrate an ability to command a majority in the House of Commons.
Former Conservative Nick Boles, who resigned from the party because of its mishandling of Brexit, announced that he was supporting the plan earlier today (August 15).
Then Welsh Conservative MP Guto Bebb said he would back Mr Corbyn as well. His argument may prove persuasive to others:
"A short-term Jeremy Corbyn government is less damaging than the generational damage that would be caused by a no-deal Brexit"
— BBC Politics (@BBCPolitics) August 15, 2019
The Green Party and Plaid Cymru have indicated interest – although both Caroline Lucas and Liz Saville-Roberts have claimed that Mr Corbyn should have committed to a people’s vote before a general election.
And Tory rebels Dominic Grieve, Oliver Letwin and Caroline Spelman have released a statement that they will talk with the Labour leadership.
It seems the only people guaranteed to oppose the Corbyn plan are Liberal Democrats.
Or are they?
Lib Dem leader Jo Swinson has become the whipping-girl of Parliament with her claim that Mr Corbyn would not be able to attract support – and has made it worse with another unwise suggestion that either Harriet Harman or Kenneth Clarke would be unobjectionable leaders the Commons could get behind.
Labour’s Angela Rayner was scathing:
This is party political point-scoring by saying she won’t work with Jeremy. When you’re looking at No Deal Brexit and our country in peril, to say “I’m not working with him because I don’t like him” is a very childish thing to do. She needs to reconsider.
— Angela Rayner (@AngelaRayner) August 15, 2019
Actually, let’s watch her saying it – I’ve got a video clip:
NEW: Labour @AngelaRayner says "@JoSwinson does not get to chose the leader of the Labour Party" and says "it's very childish" for the Lib Dem leader to refuse Jeremy Corbyn as a caretaker PM to stop a no deal Brexit. She calls on her to reconsider. pic.twitter.com/WtmgZzBK5j
— Daniel Hewitt (@DanielHewittITV) August 15, 2019
And there are other arguments…
We got 7% at the last election, you got 40%, but we're going to let Boris Johnson deliver a ruinous No Deal Brexit meltdown unless you let us hand pick who leads your party!
The sheer bloody-minded arrogance of the Lib-Dems.
— Another Angry Voice (@Angry_Voice) August 15, 2019
They worked with Tories for five years, enabling austerity, but won't work with Corbyn for five weeks – LibDems putting party politics before stopping the disastrous No Deal they claim to oppose.
Now that's what you call a lack of opposition…#NoDealLibDems pic.twitter.com/Md84se3uax
— The Prole Star (@TheProleStar) August 15, 2019
Whatever you might think of Corbyn, to suggest the leader of the official opposition, with a 40% vote share, should not lead a temporary unity government to stop a no deal Brexit is just staggeringly absurd
— rachel shabi (@rachshabi) August 15, 2019
And it seems the party leader who – if I recall correctly – said Jeremy Corbyn should quit because he can’t command the support of all his MPs… cannot command the support of all her MPs:
Oh dear. Cracks beginning to appear in the former party of Remain, the Liberal Dimocrats.
One or two aren’t so against the idea of working with a Corbyn Government for a few weeks if it means “doing everything we can to stop no deal”.
Corbyn has played a blinder here.
— Rachael Swindon #ReachOverTheNoise (@Rachael_Swindon) August 15, 2019
Govt sources bullish a unity govt will never be formed because the LibDems will prioritise short-term electoral interests above working with Labour to stop no deal, and TIG/Soubry will never deal with Corbyn. Again they’re mocking “Meatloaf Remainers” arguing among themselves
— Alex Wickham (@alexwickham) August 15, 2019
If you’re wondering about the meaning of “Meatloaf Remainer”, see:
"I will do anything to stop Brexit, but I won't do that".#MeatloafRemainer
— Francis Fisher (@frankotron) August 15, 2019
And whose is the dissenting voice?
It belongs to Sarah Wollaston, the newest defector to be recruited to the Lib Dem ranks.
She said a temporary Jeremy Corbyn-led government would be “the lesser of two evils” in order to prevent a no-deal Brexit.
Unfortunately we cannot praise her judgement unreservedly as she also said she didn’t think any Conservatives would support Mr Corbyn’s plan.
Battle lines are being drawn, and it seems likely only Ms Swinson, BoJob and the ERG (hard-Brexiteers the European Research Group) will end up on the side opposing Mr Corbyn. Come back soon for more revelations.
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