Labour will try to force Brexit vote before Christmas

Labour will try to force a Brexit vote before Christmas, shadow communities minister Andrew Gwynne has said.

A confidence vote could quickly follow MPs making a decision on whether or not to accept Theresa May’s Brexit deal, Mr Gwynne told the Andrew Marr show, but would not come before.

Mr Gwynne, who is also the party’s election co-ordinator, denied Mrs May would be safe until Christmas – leaving the door open to a confidence vote before the festive break.

He said: “The main thing we want next week is to have that meaningful vote on the Withdrawal Agreement… We want that before Christmas.

“We will assess our tactics on a day-to-day basis but fundamentally until we secure that meaningful vote from the Parliament we can’t move to the next stage.

“We think that’s the next logical step because we want to make sure Parliament has its say on what’s a catastrophically bad deal for this country and then we can move on beyond that.”

Mr Gwynne added Labour would “assess our tactics on a day-to-day basis”, but refused to elaborate on how Labour could force a confidence vote.

He said: “We will be using whatever mechanisms we have at our disposal next week to try and force the Government to bring forward that deal for a vote before Christmas.

“There are a number of mechanisms we can use and i am not going to explain parliamentary tactics on live TV but we will be using everything at our disposal next week to try and force the Government to bring that deal before Parliament before we rise for Christmas.”

But Labour’s refusal to call a confidence vote was now the main block to progress, SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon told Sky News’s Ridge On Sunday.

The Scottish First Minister said a no confidence motion in Parliament would “help clarify Labour’s position” even if it failed to topple the Government.

She said: “Labour’s position right now is it won’t back a second EU referendum until it has tried and failed to trigger a general election, but if it won’t try to trigger a general election then we’re in this catch-22 position.

“It seems to me right now that Labour is as much of a barrier to making progress on Brexit as the Tories are.”

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