Finally, they are talking to each other, British Prime Minister Theresa May and opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn. Nine days before United Kingdom and Gibraltar European Union membership referendum, Both sides have been waiting for two years to come together today with serious intentions to solve the dilemma – if it really is serious intentions.
The very fact that they have preceded their own party interests for two years shows how much the distaste between May and Corbyn, the Conservative Party and Labor, really is. No good omen for these talks. The chances of reaching an agreement are poor. For May this way is a stopgap. But what about Jeremy Corbyn to the offer to free May from her debacle? He made a conciliatory remark in advance, immediately responding to Mays request.
This willingness to compromise could also be due to the fact that Labor voters are much more open to a cross-party agreement than Tories, as an opinion poll conducted by the YouGov institute shows. 57 percent of Labor voters would support a grand coalition and 43 percent say it would help solve the Brexit issue. On the other hand, only 38 percent of the Tories would be in favor of a kind of grand coalition and 56 percent say that this would not help Brexit.
The question of what should happen on April 12, when there is no agreement, shows the differences even more clearly: the majority of Labor voters would then have to stay in the EU, more than 70 percent of the Tories would have however like a no deal, so an exit without agreement. A no-deal, however, the parliament has rejected three times by a clear majority. In addition, Parliament will push through a legislative initiative these days to force another solution. May, therefore, must go into Corbyn anyway. But what demands does "this Marxist" make, as the Tory hardliner Jacob Rees-Mogg contemptuously called him this Wednesday?
Corbyn is not a Marxist, he barely read Marx, as he says himself. He is rather socialist, tight left and therefore left EU skeptic. He voted against admission in 1975 Great Britain to the European Economic Community, the EEC. In 1993, he also voted against the Maastricht Treaty, 2008 against the Lisbon Treaty, and in 2011 supported the request for an EU referendum in Britain. He repeatedly criticized the EU for its "brutal" approach in the Greek crisis.
His political stance and ideology repeatedly bring him into conflict with Britain's membership of the EU single market, especially because of Brussels' strict rules on banned state aid. Corbyn's nationalization plans would also be more difficult to enforce within the EU than outside the single market and supervision from Brussels.
But it's not just about Corbyn's personal ideology. It also counts how the Labor supporters behaved in the 2016 referendum. Here the division of the party becomes visible. 63 percent voted to stay in the EU. It was the younger voters, the inhabitants of the big cities. Above all, the working class that traditionally chooses Labor was voted in favor of Brexit, but has been neglected in recent decades by the political class in London – in the wake of the economic boom in the south of the country and the financial crisis. Added to this were harsh government austerity programs.