The huge welcome by EU leaders for Jeremy Corbyn’s vision of Brexit has panicked centrists into a breakaway – planned for next week
The unbridled warmth of EU leaders for Jeremy Corbyn’s Brexit plan – outlined in his letter to Theresa May this week – has a section of his so-called ‘centrist’ opponents in and outside the Labour scrambling for a way to regain relevance.
Comments by Donald Tusk, Jean-Claude Juncker, Guy Verhofstadt – who described Corbyn’s plan as ‘heavenly’ – and others have dealt a huge blow to centrists already reeling after the embarrassing climbdown by MPs advocating a so-called “people’s vote” in abandoning their parliamentary amendment calling for a new referendum.
Corbyn’s clear and successful display of statesmanship has shaken a core group of centrists. So deeply, in fact, that they have put a rush on their on-again-off-again (and on-off-on-off-on-off) plans to form a new party.
Their current plan is to announce their move as early as next week, to try to claw back some semblance of relevance before Corbyn’s proposal might be embraced by enough equally desperate Tories – and the public – to save the day.
In spite of their panic, however, the resolve of the not-so-intrepid band is still wavering and they have been desperately trying to persuade or manoeuvre a number of high-profile back-benchers into joining them before finalising their jump – a context that sheds light on other events this week.
Only time will tell whether this will be yet another false start or damp squib for dithering but ego-driven MPs more concerned about their own careers and relevance than the country’s desperate need for a Labour government.
But the panic moves, confirmed to the SKWAWKBOX by a number of Labour sources, show just how serious a blow they have suffered this week as Corbyn’s intelligent and strategic handling of the Brexit issue bore fruit.
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