This is an unprecedented and perilous moment in our history.
With this Tory Government in chaos and with the jobs and security of our constituents on the line – we strongly support the Labour decision to reject Theresa May’s “deal”.
We were appalled at her anti-democratic moves to prevent Parliament having a vote, and to run down the clock by delaying it until mid-January. This was an utterly irresponsible decision, and gambling with the jobs and livelihoods of our constituents.
The Tory Government approach has been disastrous since day one. Their plan would lead to more austerity, fewer jobs and less money for our public services. This is not what anyone voted for in 2016.
We represent hugely diverse constituencies from the North to the South, from Wales to Scotland. Many of our constituencies voted to Leave in 2016. We must listen to and respond to the reasons why people did so.
But we now face a moment of national crisis, where the facts and the views of many people have changed – and are continuing to change.
It is now clear renegotiation is not a realistic prospect. No deal would be a catastrophe which we must resolutely oppose. The Government should seek an extension to Article 50 to provide time for Parliament to find a way forward. Theresa May has failed to bring this country back together.
Labour’s conference adopted a clear policy for this situation.
We must try and remove this Government from office as soon as possible. But the removal of the Government and pushing for a General Election may prove impossible, so we must join Trade Unions, our members and a majority of our constituents by then unequivocally backing the only logical option to help our country move forward: putting the decision back to the people for a final say, in a public vote, with the option to stay and keep the deal that we have.
Defeat of the Tory deal in a public vote would give us all a chance to campaign for the anti-austerity policies and a Labour government that deals with the true causes of the Brexit vote, and a reformed Europe that works for all people.