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Mon, 30 March 2020

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Labour MP says he will ‘likely’ back May’s Brexit deal after being wooed with workers’ rights promises

Labour MP says he will ‘likely’ back May’s Brexit deal after being wooed with workers’ rights promises

Liz Bates

2 min read

Labour MP John Mann has said he is “likely” to vote for Theresa May’s Brexit deal after the Prime Minister wooed him and other wavering colleagues with promises of workers' rights guarantees.

The Bassetlaw MP suggested he would not be “the only one” to defy his party’s stance and back the government in the crucial meaningful vote next.

Although he admitted that even with Labour support Mrs May’s deal was likely to be defeated.

He told Sky’s Ridge on Sunday: “As it stands it’s likely I’ll vote for the deal. 

“If I do I don’t expect to be the only one. I’d be surprised if it’s anything like enough to get this deal through but things can change.” 

The Brexiteer was one of a handful of Labour MPs who were approached by Downing Street last week as officials lobbied desperately for support ahead of Tuesday’s Commons vote.

Those wavering on the Opposition benches have demanded guarantees on workers’ rights and environmental protections be tacked on to the Withdrawal Agreement in exchange for their last-minute support. 

Asked if Mrs May had given him enough reassurances on those issues, Mr Mann replied: “Yes, and specifically understanding that the legislation – not just a promise from the Prime Minister – but the legislation on the Withdrawal Act will need to meet those requirements.

“And it’s not just guaranteeing those existing standards, because our workers rights, our environmental protections are higher than the European Union.

“It’s also ensuring that they improve theirs.”

He added that the government would be “legally bound to bring those proposals, so that the House of Commons parliament can vote on them”. 

Read the most recent article written by Liz Bates - Jeremy Corbyn admits he would rather see a Brexit deal than a second referendum