Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has suggested that the UK could be better off outside of the EU while talking to Andrew Marr on Sunday.
When asked if it was his view that Britain would be "better off" outside than EU than in, Corbyn replied that it "depends on the agreement you have with the European Union outside."
"What I’ve tried to do all along is recognise the result of the referendum and respect it" he added
"We have consistently put forward what I believe to be a credible option, which is what we call the five pillars which is the customs union, the trade relationship, protection of consumer, environmental and workers’ rights, and of course, the Good Friday agreement and the peace process"
As the 2019 Labour Conference gets into full swing, Corbyn also said this morning that the party should recognise that while the majority of the party voted to remain, the majority of the country voted to leave.
He continued, saying that it was important to remember the reasons why 17.4 million people voted to leave the EU.
"Please remember why people voted leave, why people voted remain, but also remember there is more that unites all of those people – over austerity, over investment, over education, over housing, over health, over a green industrial revolution – than there is that divides them."
Regarding the upcoming motion on Labour's Brexit position during this years conference, Corbyn told Marr that he would "respect" the outcome of the vote, even if that included campaigning "enthusiastically" for remain at a second referendum on EU membership. He reiterated however that his position was still to get a "sensible leave option" on the table.
The vote at the Labour conference will determine the Labour Party's position on a second referendum, whether the party should be explicitly for remain in all circumstances or whether the leadership should stay neutral.
Here is Labour’s draft statement on Brexit, to be approved by NEC. It commits a Labour government to negotiate new Brexit deal within three months of taking office and then putting that to British people in referendum vote three months later. Importantly it says Labour will... pic.twitter.com/3h2HkYbRMb— Robert Peston (@Peston) September 21, 2019
The divisions between the remain wing of the Labour Party and the leadership and its supporters have been exacerbated in recent weeks, accumulating in a potential motion to abolish the Deputy Leadership position currently held by Tom Watson, who is now advocating for a second EU referendum before a general election, in contrast to the Labour leadership position.
Corbyn has long faced criticism by the remain camp of the Labour Party for not being enthusiastically in support of UK membership of the EU and even of "sabotaging" the remain campaign.
While Corbyn now claims to prefer a deal which would keep the UK in a Customs Union with the EU, and not overtly a reversal of the Brexit vote. Prior to becoming leader, Jeremy Corbyn held lifelong Euroskeptic views, voting consistently in opposition to European integration, including publicly declaring the EU a "Military Frankenstein".