Jeremy Corbyn customs union call is 'crazy policy but clever politics' says Tim Farron

Jeremy Corbyn customs union call is 'crazy policy but clever politics' says Tim Farron

Tim Farron says Jeremy Corbyn is behaving like the leader of the opposition now

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Jeremy Corbyn's policy on the customs union is "crazy policy but clever politics" according to former Liberal Democra leader Tim Farron.

Corbyn signalled his support for remaining in a customs union after Brexit in a headline speech yesterday. The move could mean Labour backs amendments by Tory rebels Anna Soubry and Ken Clarke to the Government's crucial trade legislation, potentially handing a major defeat to Theresa May.

Farron, who stepped down as Lib Dem leader following June's snap general election, say it was unlikely Britain would be able to negotiate a bespoke customs union membership with the EU.

However he said it was canny political manoeuvring from Corbyn - reminiscent of John Smith and Tony Blair wooing Tory eurosceptics in the early 1990s, albeit in reverse.

"It's the first sign in many, many months of the leader of the Opposition actually behaving like the leader of the Opposition," Farron said.

It looks like Corbyn, a lifelong eurosceptic, "has been manouevred into this by his party" Farron added, but politically things "now look more interesting" as a result of Labour's policy shift. 

Farron also repeated his party's stance on Brexit, saying the Lib Dems do not want a second referendum - rather, it wants a first referendum on the deal negotiated with Brussels.

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