EU Referendum

EU referendum: Dismiss anti-Corbyn bid, say Stevens and Flynn

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Media captionCardiff Central MP Jo Stevens says moves to unseat Jeremy Corbyn are 'self-indulgent'

Two Welsh Labour MPs have called on their colleagues in Westminster to dismiss a motion of no confidence in their leader Jeremy Corbyn for not campaigning hard enough during the EU referendum.

Paul Flynn called on colleagues critical of Mr Corbyn to "shut up".

Jo Stevens said the move was "self-indulgent".

But Aberavon MP Stephen Kinnock is one of a handful of Labour MPs to publicly back the motion.

He accused Mr Corbyn of a "lacklustre" campaign.

Mr Corbyn said on Saturday he would not stand down if there was a challenge to his leadership of the Labour Party.

During his speech in London, he cited a petition urging him to stay on that has attracted around 150,000 signatures from the general public.


Jo Stevens, MP for Cardiff Central, said she believed it was "terribly unfair" to blame the referendum result on the Labour party.

"Two-thirds of Labour voters, according to the polls, voted to Remain," she said. She suggested that the support for Remain among SNP voters was "identical".

"So our situation is no different," she said.

Asked whether she will be backing the no-confidence motion, she said: "I think it's self-indulgent.

"I think we should be focusing entirely on what the country now needs.

"Our responsibility as a party is to ensure we go into these negotiations protecting the rights that EU membership gave us - human rights, consumer rights, environmental rights, and most importantly, our rights at work.

"They have to be safeguarded. We fought for them for many, many decades and we've got to make sure that they stay."

Newport West MP Paul Flynn agreed, saying of some colleagues' criticism of Jeremy Corbyn: "I wish they'd shut up and get on with the job that we have to represent our own people."

"If you go ahead and undermine Jeremy, the only result will be two Labour parties because the party in the country is not going to accept a group of parliamentarians overthrowing a decision taken by huge majority by the rank and file of the party," he added.

But Mr Kinnock said: "Jeremy did about ten rallies during the campaign. If it were the short campaign for a general election you'd normally expect the leader to be doing ten rallies in a week.

"So I do think it was a lacklustre campaign. Not enough was done to win our core vote."

The motion has no formal constitutional force but calls for a discussion at the next Parliamentary Labour Party meeting on Monday.

The chairman will decide whether it is debated. If accepted, a secret ballot of Labour MPs could be held on Tuesday.

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