Some in Labour continue to fight over the history of Brexit; the so-called Lexiters seem keen to pin the Tories’ Hard Brexit on Sir Kier Starmer. This latest round was sparked by Eagleton’s “The Starmer Project” with replies by me, Andrew Fisher and now Michael Chessum.

Some are keen to smear Starmer as the architect of “Remainer Sabotage”. He was not! Firstly, the idea of Remainer sabotage is a fantasy and secondly, if such a person exists, it is not Starmer, although I am clear there are some senior Labour parliamentarians who used the issue of Brexit to undermine Corbyn. Fisher, who was there, argues that Corbyn’s shadow cabinet followed Conference 18 policy where Starmer delivered the Shadow Cabinet line from the composite meeting, much to the chagrin of many who wanted an explicit reference to “Remain” in the words of the motion.

The reality is that the saboteurs of Corbyn’s leadership over Brexit were the MPs that like their extra-parliamentary fan club wanted a hard Brexit on any terms, some because of ideological commitment some from careerist motives; they voted against each of the options in the 2nd round of meaningful votes, three of which would have passed if they’d votes yes, including an EEA membership. They wanted a Corbyn led Labour Government which negotiated to leave the EU and rhe single market. Sadly for them neither Corbyn nor the Labour Party wanted to leave on poor terms, which they will not admit, and that is all that was left after they sank the options offered in the meaningful votes.

The Lexiter conspiracists also ignore both the tradition and enduring presence of a right wing labour opposition to Europe, and their Tory and foreign allies, in the seventies Enoch Powell, and in the 21st century Nigel Farage & Vladimir Putin. This attempted distancing of their unpleasant allies and their racism is endemic in the political practice of Lexit.

The fact is, that the Lexiters particularly in Parliament, allied with the European Reform Group and the UKIP entryists and sabotaged the choice of anything between Remain and the Tories’ Hard Brexit; they legitimised the working class vote for Brexit, colluded with the argument that a metropolitan elite were trying to steal it from them rather than ask for confirmation that the Govt had got it right and gave them permission to vote for Johnson. It’s not Remainers who should be apologising.

Was there “Remainer Sabotage”?
Tagged on:             

One thought on “Was there “Remainer Sabotage”?

  • 4th June 2022 at 10:00 am

    I was written to by a friend who asked me if I had considered that some Remainer Labour MPs may have voted in such a way as to leave the choice between May’s deal or worse and remain, hoping by offering the starkest choice to make a route to Remaining by referendum or parliamentary vote easier. The FT produced an interactive list of how MPs voted in the 2nd round of meaningful votes. I am not sure it shows that, although some Labour MPs voted against moderating the deal but for a second referendum and against “No Deal”, i.e. in accordance with the proposition. The LibDems were surprisingly all over the place!

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: