Open Labour model motion to Branches and CLPs on holding a Brexit Special Conference

by: Open Labour on 09.01.19 | In: Governance
by: Open Labour on: 09.01.19 in: Governance

Please see below a model motion to call for a Special Conference on Brexit. We urge you to take this to your CLPs and branches.

It has now become a near certainty that the Government will be unable to force Theresa May’s exit agreement (the Tory Deal) through Parliament, and a no-deal Brexit with huge negative economic consequences for every part of the UK has now become a very real prospect.

This branch/CLP [DETELE AS APPROPRIATE] therefore believes it is now imperative for the Labour Party to have a settled position on approach regarding Brexit, for going into a general election.

Our internal democracy is the most vital part of our party decision making process. When facts change its important to go back to our sovereign policy making body, Labour Party Conference, to make the decisions.

We therefore call on the NEC to meet as soon as possible to immediately organise a recall of the 2018 Labour Party Conference [Special Conference], to take place as early as possible in February to discuss the single issue of a public vote on the Tory Deal, with an option to stay in the EU.

There is Precedent as Harold Wilson called a Special Conference prior to the first European Referendum. Ed Miliband was the most recent leader to call a Special Conference to agree constitutional changes to the Labour Party including scrapping the electoral college for electing Labour Leader.
This branch/CLP resolves to send this resolution immediately to National Executive Committee members, copied to the Office of the Leader of the Labour Party.


  • This motion essentially supports the campaign for a second referendum on Brexit, which is likely to make our national division worse.

    That division is reflected in both Labour and Tory parties, the keys difference being that the division within the Labour Party is potentially solvable and if solved could enable our party to lead the programme of national reconciliation which is so desperately needed.

  • I agree with Richard.
    1) The media will have a field day reporting lines like ‘Labour revolts against Corbyn’.
    2) A referendum, whoever wins will deepen political mistrust and bitterness on one side or another, driving more potential Labour supporters towards the right and far right.
    3) Research has shown that 80 odd marginal constituencies that Labour must win to form a government voted strongly for Brexit in the referendum. Many voters in these areas will turn against Labour if, they believe media/right-wing propaganda that Labour has sold out by backing a referendum.
    As a result there will be no Labour government to implement any referendum decision. The Tories will return to power.

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