Lib Dems attack Labour for ‘all over the place’ Brexit stance after Tory talks
Deputy leader Jo Swinson said Labour had a chance to stop the UK leaving the EU.
The Liberal Democrats have accused the Labour Party of being “all over the place” on Brexit.
Deputy leader Jo Swinson said Labour had a chance to stop the UK leaving the EU but was instead “negotiating to try to make Brexit happen”.
The attack follows another day of negotiation between Labour and the Conservatives on Monday, after which neither side would discuss the details of the talks.
It also comes after Labour deputy leader Tom Watson said his was the party of “Remain and reform”, while Brexit spokesman Sir Keir Starmer said any deal should be subject to a second referendum.
The Lib Dems are appealing directly to Remain voters in the European elections and Ms Swinson, the frontrunner to replace Sir Vince Cable as party leader, told the Press Association: “Labour are refusing to take the chances to stop Brexit. They’re in the room negotiating but negotiating to try to make Brexit happen.
“A vote for Labour is a vote for Brexit in these elections. If you want to stop Brexit, the Liberal Democrats are the strongest, biggest, most consistent force for Remain.
“Labour have been all over the place on whether or not they support a People’s Vote.
“Some Labour MPs who I’ve worked with absolutely do, but unfortunately they haven’t convinced their leadership to come out unequivocally backing a People’s Vote.”
Speaking at a poster launch for the Euro elections on May 23, Ms Swinson said polls had shown her party to be more popular than the pro-Remain Green and Change UK parties.
“We said it was a shame that we weren’t able to create some kind of alliance, but I am confident we’re going to do really well in these elections,” she said.
Meanwhile, Liberal Democrat MP Layla Moran has ruled herself out of the leadership race, which will take place after the European elections.
She said she would not be able to serve her constituents to the best of her ability while also holding the position of party leader.
She added: “For this reason, I wrote to local party members last week to let them know that I would not be standing for the leadership this time.”
Ms Moran said it was “totally wrong” to suggest her decision was linked to an incident which saw police deal with a row between her and her then partner.
She admitted slapping her then-boyfriend at a party conference in 2013, leading to them both being arrested though charges were subsequently dropped.