UK voters 'deserve a final say on Brexit deal', leader of EU socialists says

Udo Bullmann cites 'lies' spread during first referendum and 700,000 taking to the streets

Jon Stone
Brussels
Wednesday 24 October 2018 10:12
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Udo Bullman says UK should have 'final say' on Brexit

The British public should be given a Final Say referendum on any Brexit deal Theresa May strikes with the EU, the leader of the socialist group in the European Parliament has said.

Udo Bullmann said “the lies of the Brexiteers” and the strength of support shown at last weekend’s march in London meant a vote now had to be on the cards.

The intervention by the leader of the centre-left group of which Labour is a member, is a major boost for The Independent’s Final Say campaign.

“Last Saturday we saw some 700,000 people marching in London to have a Final Say on a possible Brexit deal,” Mr Bullmann told a debate in the European Parliament on Wednesday morning.

“We think the British people deserve, once they have seen the measures and the consequences of this divorce, once they have seen the lies of the Brexiteers, the British people deserve to have a Final Say on their future. This is my firm belief and this is my understanding of democracy.”

Mr Bullmann’s intervention is particularly significant because EU figures have so far been reticent to call for a second vote – for fear they might be seen as interfering in Britain's politics.

But the vast show of support on the streets of the capital has apparently encouraged some in Brussels and Strasbourg to break cover and speak out.

Theresa May has said unequivocally that she will not hold another Brexit referendum. Labour has not committed to another vote but has not ruled one out as a response to a no-deal scenario, though it says it would prefer a general election.

The government is obliged to consult with parliament on the way forward in the event of a no-deal – a time when some campaigners believe a second vote could be formally proposed.

Mr Bullmann is a German MEP, and hails from the centre-left SPD social democrats, which is currently in coalition with Angela Merkel's CDU Christian democrats.

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