Diane Abbott promises to campaign for Remain to rid UK of ‘Brexit shambles’

Diane Abbott’s public show of support for Remain follows an interview with John McDonnell this morning, where the shadow chancellor said he would campaign to stay in the EU against a Brexit deal negotiated by the Labour Party. He vowed a Labour government would put Brexit back to the people in a second referendum as Mr McDonnell pledged to back Remain. Ms Abbott responded on Twitter, saying it was a “great interview” and pledged to stand with Mr McDonnell.

She wrote: “Great interview by John McDonnell on Brexit.

“He says when there is a Brexit referendum he will campaign for Remain. So will I #BrexitShambles.”

Speaking on BBC Radio 4, Mr McDonnell said he would campaign for Remain in a second Brexit referendum – something Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has promised to hold if he were to become prime minister.

The policy states that Labour will hold a referendum between staying in the EU and a Leave option which does not include a no deal.

Mr McDonnell said: “I think generally people want to provide the electorate with a choice.

“I’ve made it clear from my personal position that I’ll be campaigning for Remain. I think that’s the best choice.

“But people will want to have a say and see whether there is another option.

“But we’ve had that debate in parliament and that’s why I’ve come down in favour of Remain because I can’t see one that will have the same benefits as Remain.”

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Mr McDonnell and Ms Abbott are two of the Labour leader’s closest allies, so the public comments will serve to pile on the pressure for Mr Corbyn to back Remain in all circumstances.

Shortly after the interview, Mr Corbyn vowed to do “everything necessary” to stop a no deal Brexit.

Speaking in Corby, Northamptonshire, the Labour leader said that the UK was “heading into a political and constitutional storm” because of the Conservative Party’s “failure on Brexit and its lurch to the hard right”.

He vowed to stop a no deal Brexit at all costs by calling for a no confidence vote in Boris Johnson’s Government as soon as MPs return to Parliament next month.

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Mr Corbyn said: “I’m sure I don’t have to convince anyone here but as we look toward the return of Parliament in September, this country is heading into a political and constitutional storm.

“It’s the Conservative Party’s failure on Brexit and its lurch to the hard right that has provoked the crisis our country faces this autumn.

“After failing to negotiate a Brexit deal that would protect jobs and living standards, Boris Johnson’s Tories are driving the country towards a no deal cliff edge.

“Let’s be very clear, we will do anything everything necessary to stop a disastrous no deal for which this Government has no mandate.”

It comes after more than 100 MPs have signed a letter demanding the Prime Minister recalls Parliament, and Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell said he too backed the move.

He said: ”There is a need now to bring MPs back together again because we need time now to really have a proper debate and discussion about this matter.”

Mr McDonnell also criticised Michael Gove and Mr Johnson for saying there is “no risk” attached to a no deal Brexit.

He said: “They are wealthy people, they won’t be bearing the risk. I’m worried about, if there are food prices [rises], there are people out there, it’s bad enough, they’re just struggling to get through.”

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