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2nd Brexit Referendum? It's Now a Possibility

Opposition Labour Party backs the idea, though the specifics remain vague
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 25, 2019 1:48 PM CST
British Prime Minister Theresa May makes her way to a media conference at the conclusion of an EU-Arab League summit in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt, Monday.   (AP Photo/Francisco Seco)
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(Newser) – Will residents of the UK get a do-over on Brexit? The answer is still not crystal clear, but the possibility is more real than ever thanks to a concession made Monday by Britain's opposition Labour Party. Its leader said the party would back a second referendum related to leaving the European Union, reports the Guardian. Without Labour's backing, no such referendum would be possible, and the clock is ticking toward the March 29 deadline when Brexit is supposed to take place. The one caveat: Labour isn't saying precisely what the second referendum would stipulate, notes the BBC. Still, this development is "highly significant," says the BBC's Vicky Young.

Prime Minister Theresa May has been trying unsuccessfully to negotiate the terms of Brexit, following the rejection of her first proposal. That is raising the possibility that the UK might leave the EU with no plan at all in place, and Labour says that would be too chaotic. “One way or another, we will do everything in our power to prevent no deal and oppose a damaging Tory Brexit based on Theresa May’s overwhelmingly rejected deal,” says Labour's Jeremy Corbyn. The first step? Labour will propose its own conditions for an exit this week. If they are rejected, the second referendum would be proposed. Asked to clarify Corbyn's statement on what the second referendum would say, a spokesman essentially repeated his words: "We've just said we'd back a public vote to prevent a damaging Tory Brexit." (Read more Brexit stories.)

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