Sir Keir Starmer: Cross-party Brexit deal needs to include second referendum

European Parliament election

Perhaps even more troubling, polling for general election voting intentions shows the many people appear to plan on backing Mr Farage at in national as well as European elections - with the Brexit Party now outpointing the Conservatives in a ComRes poll. Watch it live from midday.

Speaking to the BBC Radio 4 Westminster Hour on Sunday night, the Chancellor's parliamentary aide, Huw Merriman, said the Tories will suffer "an absolute mauling" in next week's European Parliament elections.

According to the latest Opinium poll for the "Observer" newspaper, Mr Farage's party is on 34pc before the European election, with Labour in second place on 21pc and the Tories back in fourth on 11pc.

"We can not ever allow again a great democratic exercise like this to be railroaded aside by career politicians of the Labour and Tory parties".

But the prime minister has lost heavily on three attempts to get it through parliament.

The battle among leading Conservatives to replace Theresa May as prime minister threatens to derail talks with the Labour Party and the bid to find a Brexit compromise, Labour's John McDonnell said.

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The shadow Brexit secretary warned it was "impossible" to see how an agreement between the Conservatives and Labour could clear the Commons unless it guaranteed the deal would be put back to the public for a "confirmatory vote".

When asked if he felt a change of party leader would improve the party's dire poll ratings, Scully was reticent: "My biggest worry is that a leadership election will see a six-week window where we will be talking to ourselves and not the country".

He said: "I would appeal to their loyalty, to their tradition, and to say that the Conservative Party will get a new leader at some point".

Paul Scully, the Conservatives' vice chaiman for London who represents Sutton and Cheam, told City A.M. he believes his party is being punished for the deadlock over Brexit.

"We're at the ideal storm, so yes, I think we'll get an absolute mauling", he told BBC's Westminster Hour. A source said: 'You need the executive to change its mind and then you need the party to change its mind.

The website's editor Paul Goodman, a former Tory MP, said: "However unpalatable it may be, the Committee must, if she refuses this week to go by the end of the summer, change the leadership challenge rules immediately - perhaps with a trigger ballot threshold of 40% or so". If the UK Labour Party gains seats at this election, S&D will have the numbers to defeat the right and become the largest group in the European parliament.

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