UK Politics

Jeremy Corbyn: We'll probably gain power next year

Jeremy Corbyn at Glastonbury Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Mr Corbyn insisted the adulation of his supporters will 'never' go to his head

Jeremy Corbyn believes there is likely to be another election in "the next 12 months" and Labour will "probably" win it with a majority.

"I'm ready to be prime minister tomorrow," the Labour leader told Grazia in what it billed as his first interview with a women's magazine.

It comes as Mr Corbyn's ally Diane Abbott predicted that Labour would take a "decisive" opinion poll lead in 2018.

Most recent polls put the party neck-and-neck with the Conservatives.

But Ms Abbott told BBC Newsnight she expected Labour to "move ahead of this government steadily and surely as next year unravels" and said there was likely to be another election.

Mr Corbyn said another election was "quite possible" in his Grazia interview.

Asked if the public were ready for another election, he said the Conservatives did not have "much confidence in being able to command a majority in parliament" so "I think the country would want an election in order to bring about some degree of stability".

He added: "I think we'd probably win it, with a majority... we're working very hard on that."

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Media captionLabour 'to move decisively ahead'

He was also quizzed about Brexit and whether he backed his predecessor as Labour leader - and long time adversary - Tony Blair's call for a second EU referendum because of the way the Leave campaign had been conducted.

He said: "Some were extremely irresponsible in what they did and said, but we have to recognise it was the largest participation of people in an electoral process ever in Britain and they chose to leave."

Asked if he thought people had cast their votes on the basis of false promises, he said: "People still voted as they did. Yes, I thought there were some ridiculous and exaggerated claims made and I said so at the time."

But he ruled out campaigning for a second referendum, saying: "I think we should continue putting pressure on the government to allow a transition period to develop, because at the moment we're in danger of getting into a complete mess in March 2019 (the date Britain leaves the EU)."

Mr Corbyn also said he had not heard many "whispers" about sexual harassment at Westminster before the current scandal - and he had been "horrified and appalled by it all".

He told the magazine he was "utterly determined all Labour Party events should be a safe place for women to go to".

Image copyright PA
Image caption The Labour leader says Meghan Markle is clearly 'a decent person'

On Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's wedding, Mr Corbyn - a long-time republican - said "she's clearly a very decent person".

Asked about the cost of the wedding, he said: "Weddings come pretty pricey, I understand, but I think the cost should be borne by the family themselves."

He said his own wedding, to third wife Laura Alvarez, which took place in in a country hotel in Mexico in 2013, "didn't cost very much at all".

The Royal family will pay for Prince Harry's wedding, including the church service, the music, the flowers and the reception but the security costs will be picked up by taxpayers, the Palace has said.

Image caption Is Mr Corbyn a Steppenwolf fan?

The Labour leader was interviewed en route to Geneva, in Switzerland, where he was giving a speech to the United Nations and receiving an award from the International Peace Bureau for "his political work for disarmament and peace".

He insisted the adulation shown by his supporters at events like Glastonbury would "never" go to his head.

Asked if he ever sang "Oh Jeremy Corbyn" - the chant that followed him wherever he went over the summer - in the shower, he revealed an apparent fondness for a 50-year-old biker anthem by American rockers Steppenwolf.

"I'm more likely to sing Born To Be Wild," said the Labour leader.

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