John McDonnell : Labour Has ‘Held The Party Together On Brexit’

Monday, 18 Feb, 2019

Labour MPs have been divided in their response to rumours of a split.

A group of seven MPs resigned from the UK's Labour party on Monday morning amid recent criticism over handlings of Brexit and anti-Semitic sentiments within the party.

But both ex-foreign secretary Dame Margaret Beckett and Labour shadow chancellor John McDonnell, a key ally of Mr Corbyn, warned against the consequences of such a move.

They're expected to announce they are quitting the party - and could set up a new centrist grouping instead.

Gapes described the party as "racist and anti-Semitic" and said he was "furious that the Labour leadership is complicit in facilitating Brexit", adding that it would cause grave economic harm.

Umunna criticized established political parties, stating, "They can's be the change because they have become the problem".

Mr McDonnell urged MPs to learn the lessons of history, after a "gang of four" quit Labour to form the Social Democratic Party (SDP) in 1981.

"And it basically installed Mrs Thatcher in power for that decade". He said that those who were rumoured to be on the cusp of leaving were "Labour through and through" and "wouldn't want this".

Labour's deputy leader Tom Watson pulled out of an interview with Sky News this morning. "I think that's right".

The timing of the announcement has been questioned, with second referendum campaigners concerned that the exodus of the Independent Group could cause Corbyn and the Labour leadership to back away from supporting a "People's Vote" and potentially split Labour voters, leading to a greater Conservative majority in the next general election.

"You would only go back to the people in extremis if can't get a deal agreed through parliament".

In photos taken a year before Corbyn was elected as the leader of the Labour Party, he is seen holding a wreath over the grave of Atef Bseiso, the head of intelligence for the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), who helped plan the attack at the Munich Olympics, which claimed the lives of 11 Israeli athletes.

The prospect of holding such a second referendum poses a challenge for Corbyn: while numerous party's members fervently back a so-called People's vote, others just want Britain to leave as soon as possible.