Five Labour front-benchers have resigned after breaking the whip to vote against ‘quitter group’ MP Sarah Wollaston’s attempt to piggy-back a new referendum on the motion to extend Article 50
Five Labour front-benchers resigned on Thursday evening after voting against ‘tinge group’ MP Sarah Wollaston’s ill-fated and ill-judged amendment that tried to push a new referendum through Parliament on the back of a motion to postpone the UK’s departure from the EU. Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn had instructed Labour MPs to abstain, knowing it would be defeated in any event.
Some of the MPs resigned voluntarily, others were asked to by Corbyn. All of them demonstrated that Labour still conducts politics with honour, in spite of the Tories’ years-long degradation of democracy and the and undermining of parliamentary process and convention.
From the repeated failures of Cameron and May to sack incompetent or corrupt ministers, to refusals of the same to resign, to the underhand and desperate manoeuvres to ignore ‘pairing’ even for maternity leave to win tight votes, the Tories have continually debased our democracy to the point where it is barely recognisable.
But Labour – and Corbyn its leader – still operate on the principles of honour and decency that used to be considered central to the UK’s democracy and government, but no longer apply in the minds of the Tories.
And having demonstrated that, Corbyn must now make any further votes on the issue of a referendum a ‘conscience’ matter in which MPs are free to vote as the feel they should.
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