Our correspondent The Rebel looks at the crisis engulfing politicians today in the extraordinary world of Brexit politics after the astonishing Tory leadership race gave us a Conservative Prime Minister who is the first in history to have lost all the key votes at the start of his Premiership and has now prorogued Parliament.
The Rebel is a leading political figure close to senior politicians in London as well as Cardiff Bay, and will always give readers the inside track on what is being discussed in the corridors of power.
OK, after weeks of banging on about the chaos for Boris and the Tories as they try to secure a deal, I want to start this column by talking about the Labour party.
Is it FOR or AGAINST Brexit?!!
Voters simply don’t know.
This week Tom Watson (the Deputy Leader of Labour remember) urged his party to “unambiguously and unequivocally back remain” – and to push for a referendum, before a General Election.
Tommy boy is no friend of Jezza’s, even though he is his not so loyal deputy, and that division alone puts voters off big time.
He was speaking at a Creative Industries Federation conference in London on Wednesday, and argued that Labour can win back the Remain voters who deserted it in May’s European elections; but only if it now becomes an avowedly anti-Brexit party.
That split with his leader has certainly thrown the cat among the pigeons, and put off any potential Labour voters.
His stance contrasts with the bearded one’s insistence the day before that any referendum must include a “credible leave option”.
Jezza told the Trade Union Congress in Brighton: “The policy is clear…”.
Er, except it isn’t.
Try explaining the Labour policy on the doorstep in the next General Election which may be only weeks away.
The reality of course is that the bearded lefty is himself a firm Euro-sceptic, is trying to please his anti-EU advisers, left-winger Seamus Milne as well as former Communist Party member Andrew Murray, and wants to keep on board the Labour voters who opted for Leave in the 2016 referendum.
But the voters want CLARITY!
The problem for Labour as it tries to ride several horses at once, is that this only benefits the Liberal Democrats who everyone knows wants to call a halt to this Brexit business altogether.
The party’s position is nice and simple – it is against leaving the EU and voters know that.
Watson has insisted that it is not too late to win back Remainers attracted by the Lib Dems’ simpler “stop Brexit” message.
Yet it would be remiss of me not to turn also to the extraordinary mess the tories have got themselves into.
Polling figures APPEAR to back them, but dig a little deeper.
The biggest group in those figures, 12 per cent, now plan to vote Lib Dem, perhaps going back after deserting the centrists following five years of coalition with the tories.
Just half of 2015 tory Remainers plan to stick with the party (a third go to the Lib Dems), compared to 84 per cent of Leavers (11 per cent got to the Brexit Party).
Among 2015 Labour Leavers, 18 per cent are going to the tories and 27 per cent to the Brexit Party.
The tory high command know they screwed up massively by trying to accelerate this and telling MPs to get lost.
They realise (or think they do) they need a deal now they have lost the vote in the commons – not least because the Scottish judges decided proroguing Parliament was unlawful.
All eyes will be on the judgement of the Supreme Court on Tuesday.
But it is an unbelievable time and nobody really knows what is going to happen.
The only thing we can be sure of is that both main parties are in a complete mess!
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