+++Cross party opposition talks end in agreement on the priority of legislation to prevent no deal

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Labour politicians in place in the room where the cross-party talks were held this morning

The following joint statement has been issued by the Labour Party, the SNP, the Liberal Democrats, Plaid Cymru, the Green Party and the Independent Group for Change following this morning’s meeting of their leaders:

The leaders of the opposition parties held a productive and detailed meeting on stopping a disastrous No Deal exit from the EU.

Jeremy Corbyn outlined the legal advice he has received from Shadow Attorney General Shami Chakrabarti which calls Boris Johnson’s plans to suspend parliament to force through a No Deal “the gravest abuse of power and attack upon UK Constitutional principle in living memory”.

The attendees agreed that Boris Johnson has shown himself open to using anti-democratic means to force through no deal.

The attendees agreed on the urgency to act together to find practical ways to prevent No Deal, including the possibility of passing legislation and a vote of no confidence.

The party leaders agreed to further meetings.

Here’s some updates from Jessica Elgot, the Guardian’s chief political correspondent:

* Paul Walter is a Liberal Democrat activist. He is one of the Liberal Democrat Voice team. He blogs at Liberal Burblings.

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20 Comments

  • John Peters 27th Aug '19 - 1:35pm

    So the grand plan is there is no plan.

    No VONC as it will be lost.

    So now it’s all down to the Speaker.

    At least Boris has a mandate to leave with no deal. The Speaker has no mandate.

  • Ben Franklin’s, “we must all hang together or most assuredly we will all hang separately” has never been more appropriate?

    A crucial development from Farage’s rally is that the Brexit party would form a “non-aggression pact” with the Conservatives if the prime minister pursues a no-deal Brexit.

  • John Marriott 27th Aug '19 - 2:10pm

    @John Peters
    It’s far too early yet to read the last rites on parliamentary opposition to Johnson’s scheme. What’s this about his having “a mandate to leave with no deal”? Have I missed something?

  • @John Peters – Boris (Johnson) does not have a mandate to leave with No Deal. Nobody voted for No Deal in June 2016, and in the 2017 General Election, 54% of voters voted for parties which either opposed Brexit altogether or (in Labour’s case) specifically pledged to leave with a deal.

  • John Peters 27th Aug '19 - 2:31pm

    @John Marriott

    The Tory manifesto for the last election

    “The negotiations will undoubtedly be tough, and there will be give and take on both sides, but we continue to believe that no deal is better than a bad deal for the UK.” (pp. 35-36)
    https://www.conservatives.com/manifesto

    Given that Labour, the Lib Dems, the SNP, the Green etc. all voted against the only dealon the table that deal must have been a bad deal.

  • Geoffrey Dron 27th Aug '19 - 3:27pm

    @John Peters

    https://lawyersforbritain.org/why-brexiteers-right-to-reject-theresa-mays-deal

    The May-Robbins WA was so bad as to qualify for the epithet of Carthaginian terms.

    As a 2016 remain voter, I wanted to see a sensible deal, but this didn’t qualify. It’s sole merit was that being worse than remain it might have induced sensible people to step back from the referendum result.

  • John Peters 27th Aug '19 - 3:39pm

    @Geoffrey Dron

    Fortunately the referendum was remain or leave, not remain or leave provided a deal acceptable to the EU and those who voted remain can be found.

  • nvelope2003 27th Aug '19 - 3:53pm

    Only Parliament can enact legislation if it is needed.

  • John Peters,

    The Conservative manifesto actually promised, “Theresa May’s Conservatives will deliver the best possible deal for Britain as we leave the European Union delivered by a smooth, orderly Brexit” (page 30). And “We believe it is necessary to agree the terms of our future partnership alongside our withdrawal, reaching agreement on both within the two years allowed by Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union” (page 36)

    It never stated we will negotiate a deal with the EU and if rejected by Parliament we will leave with no deal. The Conservatives do not have a mandate for no deal. To get one they need to stand a manifesto which states we will leave with no deal.

    Turning to the subject of the OP, I think this is disappointing. I believe that to have a general election on 24th October the vote of no confidence should take place on or before 12th September. Passing legislation to stop a no deal Brexit will likely take more than two weeks and will need to include passing legislation to tell the PM to ask for an extension to Article 50 with a deadline, so if he doesn’t comply he can be removed from office.

  • John Marriott 27th Aug '19 - 5:06pm

    @John Peters
    As far as I can see, the only ‘mandate’ Johnson has is from those Tory Party members, who supported him as their Leader. Talking of ‘ bad deals’, didn’t he at some stage actually vote for the May deal.

    You appear to have discovered LDV fairly recently. From the positions you take it would be fair to assume that you are no fan of the Lib Dems or Labour for that matter. You are, of course, perfectly entitled to your opinion; but I doubt whether you will make many converts on this website. However, keep trying by all means.

  • Barry Lofty 27th Aug '19 - 5:28pm

    Whatever the outcome of these tortuous negotiations on Brexit my main feeling is that we do not give in and let the lies and disinformation constantly being thrown out by Johnson, Farage and their self serving propaganda teams and constantly being given space by the right wing media. More power to the opposition parties make it as difficult as you can for them we are relying on you. Well that’s got that of my chest!!

  • John Peters 27th Aug '19 - 5:28pm

    I make no particular secret of being a Tory voter.

    Neither am I interested in trying to change entrenched opinions.

    I can see why Lib Dems might want to ignore manifestos but the point is if something is in the manifesto it is a legitimate option.

  • marcstevens 27th Aug '19 - 6:41pm

    So you’re saying the ‘no deal’ position being triumphed by Mr Johnson and his cohorts is not entrenched then?

  • John Marriott 27th Aug '19 - 8:11pm

    @John Peters
    So, why do you continue to flog a dead horse? Manifestos need to come with a government health warning. In any case, I often wonder what percentage of the voting public has any idea what most contain. Perhaps the word ‘aspirations’ might be a better description.

    By all means, carry on contributing if it makes you feel better. I could think of better ways of spending my time, if I were a Tory supporter, unless, of course, you are counting on winding a few of our more liberal liberals up. You seem to be having some success.

  • Geoffrey Dron 27th Aug '19 - 8:21pm

    @John Peters – no probs re your being a Tory voter, as I once was.

    Unlike the Torygraph site, where allegations of treason are thrown about like confetti by the brexiloons, LDV is generally courteous.

  • marcstevens 27th Aug '19 - 9:38pm

    I wonder what would happen if I did the same wind-ups on Conservative Home or Labour List. I am sure I would be barred.

  • John Peters 28th Aug '19 - 9:45am

    labourlist no longer allows comments. I always found that site good natured when I commented there. There were a few silly comments but it was never as toxic as somewhere like below the line in the Guardian.

    I have been commenting on and off on this site for quite a few years and generally I find it very good natured. It does attract a few people who have extreme views but so does every site.

    It’s a pity we don’t see more comments from the 30% or so of Lib Dems who voted Leave. We don’t want this site to become an echo chamber.

  • But they do post on here. I could exactly the same with your Conservative Home site, the remain view is barely tolerated. Your party members seem to spend much of their time insulting remain voters so obviously we are not welcome on there.

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