Thornberry: Majority of Labour frontbench would vote remain in new referendum

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A “majority” of Labour’s frontbench would vote remain in a second referendum on Britain’s membership of the EU, shadow foreign secretary Emily Thornberry has said.

Her comments come ahead of the Labour Party conference in Liverpool in which Brexit is expected to feature heavily.

Ms Thornberry, in an interview with the London Evening Standard, also said that she believed Jeremy Corbyn would vote remain if there were to be another referendum.

Asked if she thought the frontbench would vote remain she said “I would’ve thought the majority”, and asked whether Mr Corbyn would, she responded “yeah, I think so”.

Jeremy Corbyn
Ms Thornberry said the Labour anti-Semitism row had distressed Jeremy Corbyn (John Linton/PA)

She told the Standard that she had often “disagreed” with Mr Corbyn, the neighbouring Islington MP, but added: “It’s fine, he has always been completely lovely. He’s kind and supportive, we look after each other.

“If I was being criticised on the Left, Jeremy would say, ‘I don’t agree with Emily but I understand why she is saying this and it comes from principles’ and he would defend me.”

Ms Thornberry also revealed that Labour’s antisemitism row has “really distressed” Mr Corbyn.

She said: “Because it goes so against his idea of who he is. He has taken it personally.

“During the last rebellion (against his leadership), people were saying the most terrible things. And I remember him saying, ‘one of them says I’m incompetent! What do you think Emily? Ha ha ha. He was fine.

“But calling him an anti-Semite? Calling him a racist? That just went straight to the absolute core. It really distressed him.”

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