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As one Labour trade Unionist put it some time ago: You have one poll to decide on whether to take industrial action, and then another on whether your members accept whatever deal you have negotiated on their behalf.
The precise form of any referendum question still has to be decided, however, and depends on whether May actually negotiates a deal. Will it be Remain vs. May's deal, or May's deal vs. No deal? (A three choice -vote 1,2,3 in order of your choice - with votes for the most unpopular option recounted on the basis of their second choice) seems much too complicated for a British people used to a FPTP system.
If there is no deal, it becomes a simple Remain vs. no deal Brexit choice. If the House of Commons votes down May's deal, arguably that option is defunct too, so the choice is Remain vs. No deal Brexit. The choice which must be avoided is No deal vs. May's deal, as it would disenfranchise everyone who voted Remain before.
That is probably why May, and any deal she might negotiate has to go. Corbyn is right to look for a general election to remove her, but would also be right to promise a second referendum as part of his manifesto for the election.
The EU needs to be clear it is not going to negotiate a new deal with Corbyn having failed to have any deal they negotiated with May rejected by the House of Commons or the British people. What they offer Corbyn must be no different to what they offered May so the choice in any referendum will be Remain or a no deal Brexit.
Index of Frank's Diaries
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