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Theresa May dominated the news bulletins last night by making a statement on the steps of Downing Street that added precisely nothing to what she had already said. Despite the government crest on the lectern, it was a solely party political ploy.
She can say that her ‘door remains open’ to cross-party talks (while stood in front of one which was, fittingly, shut) but her words mean little. Had she truly wanted to build cross-party consensus, she would have started two years ago, when she lost her majority. If she was serious about cross-party consensus now, she would not be doubling down on the red lines that prevent anything she proposes being remotely acceptable to most Labour members of parliament.
That means Labour cannot help build a coalition within her red lines. We can only build one outside her red lines. From opposition, that realistically only gives us one option: a public vote. In that situation, we would be better off being honest: we want to stay in.
The route to that becoming a political reality is a difficult one.
Luckily, Alastair Campbell brings his expertise to the Progressive Britain podcast tomorrow, discussing how a public vote could come about, how the pro-European campaign would have to change, and his to-do with Boris Johnson on the way to recording.
The special episode will be out at 6am tomorrow – subscribe now to make sure you do not miss out.
– Conor Pope, deputy editor
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Alison McGovern and Stephanie Lloyd reveal how the night of Theresa May’s big vote will unfold, while Conor Pope speaks to Hope Not Hate’s Matthew McGregor about the growing harassment outside parliament by a small cabal of rightwing thugs – does this relate to wider growth of a far right ecosystem?
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