Jeremy Corbyn's future would be up for discussion in coalition talks, says Labour adviser

Posted On: 
26th November 2019

Jeremy Corbyn's position would be up for discussion in any negotiations with other parties if there is another hung Parliament, according to one of Labour's top advisers.

Lord Kerslake is the former head of the UK civil service.
Credit: 
PA Images

Lord Kerslake said the Lib Dems had made it clear that they would not support a Labour-led government if Mr Corbyn remained in charge.

The crossbench peer, who is also the former head of the civil service, also acknowledged that there would have to be talks with the SNP over its demand for a second independence referendum.

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His comments are significant because he is a close ally of John McDonnell, and played a key role in the removal of Karie Murphy from Mr Corbyn's office last month.

Speaking to Sky News, Lord Kerslake said that Labour will have "won" the election if they deprive the Conservatives of a Commons majority.

In those circumstances, he said, Labour would have to win the support of other opposition parties in order to form a minority government.

He said: "We don’t yet know in truth how that would play out, although the Liberal Democrats have said they could not support a Jeremy Corbyn-led Labour government and the SNP have said they would want a second referendum.

"All of that would form part of the conversation that Labour would be having informally with those two parties."

A Labour spokesperson insisted that neither Mr Corbyn's future or a second independence referendum would be "on the table" in any post-election talks.

Lord Kerslake's intervention came as a new opinion poll showed the Conservatives' lead over Labour had been cut to just seven points, increasing the chances of another hung Parliament.

Cabinet Office minister Michael Gove said: "Lord Kerslake has let the cat out of the bag. Corbyn's Labour have already begun discussing a deal with the SNP to hold another referendum on Scotland as well as another referendum on Brexit.

"As Kerslake makes clear, a vote for Jeremy Corbyn is a vote for dither, delay and the chaos of two more referendums in 2020."