The North’s capital city and Labour’s flagship council ‘will not back a People’s Vote’.
It was for the fifth time that Lib Dem plans to force Manchester Council to support a People’s Vote fell flat yesterday after the idea was rejected by every single Labour councillor.
Lib Dem leader John Leech asked for a suspension of the meeting’s normal running order to debate an urgent motion of support for a People’s Vote.
Before Mr Leech could finish his demands, Labour council leader Richard Leese interrupted him and continued to speak over him for the remainder of his speech.
The Lib Dem and his motion were silenced and then immediately denied a vote in the chamber being defeated by 93 votes to three.
Manchester voted 60% to remain and polls suggest support for remaining in the EU has surged even higher. This is the fifth time Lib Dems have tried to commit Manchester Council to a People’s Vote.
In a previous council meeting, Richard Leese said he hadn’t received a single demand for a People’s Vote from local people, adding that he “cannot influence or control votes on Brexit.”
But Lib Dem deputy leader Richard Kilpatrick says this is nonsense.
“Given the urgency of Brexit and the European elections in just a weeks’ time, Lib Dems tried to commit Manchester council to support a People’s Vote.
“Labour rejected our calls – for the fifth time.
“It seems that Labour still hasn’t got the message despite plummeting in the polls and losing nearly 100 seats in the local elections. The unapologetically pro-EU Lib Dems gained more than 700 councillors in a clear vindication of our position on Brexit.
“Leading pollster Comres have placed Lib Dems as the front-runner Remain party in Manchester and the North West region because we have been clear and consistent in our pledge to stop Brexit.
“Manchester is a Remain city and the longer this Council puts off support the more voters will flock to the only pro-EU party in the city.”
European elections will be held in Manchester and the North West on 23 May.
Labour, the Conservatives, Liberal Democrats, Change UK, Brexit Party, UKIP and the Greens are all fielding candidates.