Anger at Labour conference Brexit vote


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EU flags at Labour ConferenceImage copyright EPA
Image caption There have been pro-EU protests outside the party conference

Pro-EU Labour MPs have expressed their anger after no Brexit motions were chosen to be voted on at party conference.

Instead, delegates chose Grenfell Tower, rail, growth and investment, public sector pay, workers’ rights, the NHS, housing and social care.

Party sources said there would still be a debate and vote on the subject.

But there will be no vote on contentious issues like single market membership.

The Jeremy Corbyn-supporting Momentum group had urged its members not to support a conference motion on Brexit, emailing members with an alternative list of subjects.

After the eight subjects chosen by local members and trade union members were announced, several Labour MPs tweeted their displeasure.

Former shadow chancellor Chris Leslie said the outcome was “utterly ridiculous” and former culture secretary Ben Bradshaw tweeted: “Keeping #Brexit, biggest issue of our time, off our #lab17 agenda is silly and undermines the claim that we are listening to our members.”

Chuka Umunna, of the pro-EU Open Britain campaign, tweeted: “I can’t believe no Brexit related motion is being debated at #Lab17 tomorrow. We should not be ducking this debate – we should be leading it.”

Labour said choosing which issues to prioritise for debate was the choice of delegates.

“Brexit will be debated by conference in a session set aside for Brexit and international issues on Monday morning,” the party added.

However, this will focus on approving existing policy, with none of the separate resolutions put forward by delegates on Brexit selected.

One source told BBC political editor Laura Kuenssberg it was a “swindle” to suggest Brexit would be properly debated and discussed at the conference.

Liberal Democrat shadow Brexit secretary Tom Brake said: “Corbyn’s anti-EU wing of the Labour party have won the day.

“Labour have again shown themselves to be neither here nor there, unable to come up with a coherent policy for fear of their own internal politics spilling out into the public.”

View the original article: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-41378928

On Sunday, Mr Corbyn faced calls to commit Labour to stay in the EU single market and customs union after Brexit, but he warned this could affect the UK government’s ability to use state aid to safeguard jobs.

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