Syria crisis: Labour would consider second vote on military strikes, says Balls
Andrew Grice has been Political Editor of The Independent since 1998. He was previously Political Editor of The Sunday Times, where he worked for 10 years, and he has been a Westminster-based journalist since 1982. His column, Inside Politics, appears in The Independent each Saturday.
Monday 09 September 2013
Labour is open to another Commons vote on whether Britain should join military strikes against Syria, Ed Balls said last on Monday evening.
Although MPs rejected UK involvement two weeks ago, the shadow Chancellor told Channel 4 News: “On the night when David Cameron lost the vote, our jaws dropped when the Prime Minister suddenly took the idea of military action right off the table. I wasn’t expecting that, nor was Ed Miliband. If David Cameron is going to put that back on the table, we’ll look at that.
"If there is [new] evidence and the Prime Minister puts it back on the table we will look at it. But he’s the Prime Minister – he’s got to lead.”
There is growing pressure from Conservative and Labour MPs for another vote. But Mr Cameron is unlikely to risk another humiliating defeat. His allies say he is not sure Mr Miliband could deliver the Opposition’s support because Labour MPs are split on intervention. Tory MPs are also divided.
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