Theresa May swung towards a Hard Brexit at the Tory party conference
MPs must get a vote in Parliament to stop Theresa May ramming through a disastrous ‘Hard Brexit ‘, Labour’s new EU chief demanded today.
Sir Keir Starmer joined Ed Miliband and growing calls by Mrs May’s own Tory MPs to demand full scrutiny in the House of Commons.
The Tory Prime Minister swung to the right at her party conference as she signalled a punishing Brexit deal and condemned MPs calling for a vote on its terms.
She sneered last week: "They’re not standing up for democracy – they’re trying to subvert it."
But she risks a rebellion after her own MPs, including ex-ministers Nicky Morgan and Anna Soubry, were named today as wanting a vote on the full deal.
Sir Keir Starmer on the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show
Speaking in his first interview after Jeremy Corbyn made him Shadow Brexit Secretary, Sir Keir said the terms "absolutely have to be put to a vote in the House".
Mrs May signalled she would not compromise on restricting EU free migration even if it meant a hit to Britain’s ability to trade.
But lawyer and former public prosecutions director Sir Keir said: "It’s astonishing that the Prime Minister is not putting the economy first.
"The economy, jobs and workers’ rights – they have to be the priority.
"Nobody gave the government a blank cheque here. We must get a vote on the opening terms of the negotiation."
Differences of opinion appeared to open up between Sir Keir and Jeremy Corbyn
During the interview Sir Keir also confirmed he followed Jeremy Corbyn’s policy of saying there should be no "re-run" of the EU referendum .
He said he was "appalled" by Tory plans for firms to list their number of foreign workers, which were announced with the "wrong tone" and "extraordinary language".
But he appeared to contradict his leader by saying the level of migration to Britain should come down and Britain retain close links to the EU single market.
Accepting immigration was a major concern for voters in the EU referendum , he said: "There’s been a huge amount of immigration over the last 10 years.
Theresa May said MPs wanting a Commons vote were ‘subverting democracy’
"I think it should be reduced and it should be reduced by making sure we have got the skills in this country to do the jobs that need to be done."
Sir Keir did however refuse to back the government’s 100,000-a-year target and said businesses should not have to give up workers they need.
He said he was sad to see sacked chip whip Rosie Winterton go in Jeremy Corbyn ‘s shadow cabinet reshuffle, but added MPs must rally behind the leader.
"The country needs an effective opposition and we need to provide it", he added.