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Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Starmer and Sarwar Challenged Over Ditching Principles on Brexit

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The SNP has challenged Sir Keir Starmer and Anas Sarwar to admit whether they have “ditched their principles by backing Brexit” – after their Rutherglen and Hamilton West candidate claimed he hadn’t ditched his.

In a podcast for the Daily Record, Michael Shanks said “I have not changed my principles” on Brexit but also, in direct contradiction, admitted he didn’t think Scotland should rejoin the EU, claiming “I think it’s not a question for just now” and suggesting there isn’t a public appetite to rejoin, despite polling consistently showing the overwhelming majority of Scots want to rejoin.

Shanks previously quit the Labour Party in 2019, claiming the Labour Party had “a bankrupt approach to our membership of the EU and is complacent about the impact it will have on the poorest people across the UK”.

Since then, the Labour Party’s support for Brexit has become even more extreme.

Sir Keir Starmer has admitted that the Labour Party now fully supports Brexit and has ruled out any return to the EU, single market and freedom of movement, admitting that under a UK Labour government “there’s no going back into the EU, there’s no going back into the single market.”

SNP EU Accession spokesperson Alyn Smith MP said:

“Brexit has been a disaster for Scotland – costing us billions of pounds, increasing the cost of living and inflicting long-term damage to our economy and NHS.

“The SNP is the only party offering Scotland an escape from Brexit with independence – and a route back to EU prosperity.

“In contrast, Sir Keir Starmer has sold Scotland out by backing Brexit and admitting there’s no going back to the EU under the pro-Brexit Labour Party.

“Michael Shanks seems to be all over the place on Brexit.

“He admits Brexit is ‘bankrupt’ and hurts the poorest in society but doesn’t think we should rejoin the EU.

“As if this hypocrisy is not bad enough, he is also simply wrong in pretending there’s no appetite in Scotland to rejoin the EU – leading many to question ‘what’s the point in the Labour Party?’

“And his claim that he hasn’t changed his principles raises an obvious question for Sir Keir Starmer and Anas Sarwar – isn’t it clear that they’ve ditched their principles by backing Brexit and ruling out any return to the EU?

“At the next election, voting SNP is the only way to secure independence, escape Brexit and build a wealthier, fairer future in the EU.”

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