Brexit: John McDonnell suggests second referendum ‘inevitable’ if Theresa May’s deal voted down

‘Our policy is if we can’t get a general election, then the other option which we’ve kept on the table is a people’s vote’

By Lizzy Buchan
29 Nov, 2018

John McDonnell has suggested a second referendum now seems “inevitable” if MPs reject Theresa May’s Brexit deal.

In a significant intervention, the shadow chancellor also said Labour would call on the government to “join us” in a public vote if Labour could not secure a general election – the party’s preferred option.

Labour’s official position is to keep all options on the table, including the prospect of a second referendum, but Jeremy Corbyn has made it clear he disapproves of a new public vote.

Mr McDonnell told the BBC: “We want a deal that will protect jobs and the economy. If we can’t achieve that – the government can’t achieve that – we should have a general election but that’s very difficult to do because of the nature of the legislation that David Cameron brought forward.

“If that’s not possible, we’ll be calling upon the government then to join us in a public vote.

“It’s difficult to judge each stage, but that’s the sequence I think that we’ll inevitably go through over this period.”