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Johnson and Davis's exit may plunge the Tories into terminal crisis

Yesterday, the Star predicted that the Chequers “agreement” on a post-Brexit negotiating stance would not last very long.

Within 24 hours, David Davis and Boris Johnson have rushed to prove the Morning Star right.

Their resignations as Brexit Secretary and Foreign Secretary, respectively, have plunged the minority Tory government into what could turn into a terminal crisis.

All that is needed now is a comprehensive rubbishing of this week’s promised White Paper by EU bureaucrats and politicians and Britain could be heading for an early general election.

The Tories are imploding because their unstable regime has been trying to turn a potential silk purse into a squalid pig’s ear.

Theresa May and the majority of pro-EU Remainers in her Cabinet have been pretending that they will deliver Brexit with benefits and so honour the result of the June 2016 EU referendum. 

In reality, they have wanted to negotiate a bogus Brexit deal that would keep Britain tied to the big business “freedoms” of the EU Single Market and Customs Union, in keeping with the demands of Tory Party’s corporate paymasters. 

Their duplicitous strategy has hit the rocks, despite the Prime Minister’s efforts to persist with it at PMQs today.

A substantial minority of ministers and Tory MPs know that a deal that sticks close to the EU is no real Brexit at all and now are in open revolt.

Henceforth, the one force that can save minority Tory rule is likely to be a hardcore minority in the Parliamentary Labour Party.

These are the MPs who put their support for the capitalist free market, a militarised “Fortress Europe” and the EU above any desire for a Labour government led by Jeremy Corbyn, John McDonnell and the left.

Their instinct will be to keep May or any pro-EU successor in office in order to achieve a deal on terms largely dictated by the EU.

But Labour now needs to be advancing the bold, left and progressive alternative to any such craven course of inaction. 

That would be to force an early general election at the first opportunity and to campaign on a manifesto which commits a Labour government to ending austerity, reversing the spending cuts, assisting industry across Britain, investing in infrastructure and green energy, expanding trade with the Brics (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) and other growing economies, redistributing wealth and devolving powers repatriated from the EU to the nations and regions of a federal Britain.

Where Labour’s policies contradict EU treaties and directives, whether on state investment bonds, government aid to industry, renationalisation of the railways, compulsory competitive tendering, VAT reform or outlawing the super-exploitation of migrant labour, Labour should be clear that it rejects any kind of post-Brexit EU settlement that would prohibit such measures. 

Labour has already missed two open goals when it comes to Brexit. 

First, by not allowing all shadow cabinet members to campaign in the June 2016 referendum in keeping with their previous record, Jeremy Corbyn was deprived of the opportunity to emerge after polling day as the one major party leader to represent the majority of voters.

Then, within days of the Leave victory, anti-socialist and pro-EU Labour MPs plunged the party into a second leadership contest rather than unite around Corbyn’s immediate challenge to the Tory government to trigger Britain’s withdrawal from the EU.

The time has come to hold the “people’s vote” that Britain needs — a general election to remove the divided Tories and elect a left-led Labour government.

Jeremy Corbyn and Labour must now step in to negotiate a real “people’s Brexit,” not a “soft” nor a neoliberal Brexit.


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