Tom Watson Hits Back At Ian Lavery's Criticism Of Second Referendum Stance

18 June 2019, 11:19 | Updated: 18 June 2019, 11:21

Labour's deputy leader Tom Watson hit back at party Chairman Ian Lavery for criticising his calls for a second referendum.

Labour Party Chairman Ian Lavery hit out Mr Watson for continued calls for a second referendum, saying the party's deputy leader was not "politically smart".

In a tweet, Mr Lavery responded to a speech made by Mr Watson saying: "Brexit has turned this country into a toxic nation. However, ignoring the 17.4m leave voters isn’t politically smart nor indeed particularly democratic. Is it?".

But the Deputy Leader hit back, saying the party's chairman did not represent the views of party members and supporters.

Speaking to James O'Brien on LBC, Mr Watson said: "[Mr Lavery] feels very strongly about this, and Brexit puts pressure on a lot of party bonds.

Deputy Labour Leader Tom Watson
Deputy Labour Leader Tom Watson. Picture: PA

"What I did yesterday was reflect the views of the vast majority of Labour Party members and supporters.

"I don't think Ian represents them.

"We need to recognise that parliamentary democracy has failed.

"We need a way through this, and the way through it is we can't agree a compromise, but we may be able to agree a process by which we resolve Brexit, and for me that's a people's vote.

"And if there's a people's vote, then parties need to take a position."

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