Lazarowicz fails to back Labour for Euro elections

A former Scottish Labour MP is urging people to vote SNP or Liberal Democrat at the European elections in a major snub to his party.

Mark Lazarowicz, chair of the European Movement in Scotland, has urged voters to back SNP, LibDem, Change Uk or Scottish Greens at the Euro elections - but not Labour.
Mark Lazarowicz, chair of the European Movement in Scotland, has urged voters to back SNP, LibDem, Change Uk or Scottish Greens at the Euro elections - but not Labour.

Mark Lazarowicz, who represented Edinburgh North and Leith in the House of Commons for Labour for 14 years, has urged voters to back any party which "unequivocally" supports a second EU referendum in this Thursday's European elections.

A new leaflet from the European Movement in Scotland, which Mr Lazarowicz now chairs, recommends that people should back candidates from parties such as Change UK, the Scottish Greens, SNP or the Scottish Liberal Democrats.

The organisation says it is only supporting political parties who are "unequivocally backing a so-called People’s Vote on the UK’s membership of the EU, with the option to Remain on the ballot paper."

Mark Lazarowicz, said: “There is a clear public demand for the holding of a second EU-referendum as Westminster remains deeply divided and the economic impacts of Brexit become clearer. It’s becoming obvious that the only way out of the deadlock is putting EU membership back to the people in a second referendum.

“The EU has brought countless benefits to Scotland – giving us the freedom of movement, supporting scientific research, strengthening our universities, providing funding for rural areas and safeguarding workers’ rights.

“Brexit will affect the current generation for years to come and it is vital for our democracy and our country that we have a People’s Vote and we would urge voters to back parties that support this position.”

Yesterday Scottish Labour leader Richard Leonard said that he would be responsible for any electoral losses on Thursday. Currently Labour has two MEPs in Brussels, but polls predict Nigel Farage’s Brexit Party is on course to secure more than a third of the vote, and could win two MEPs in Scotland, meaning that Labour and the Conservatives could both be squeezed out entirely.

Labour has been criticised for attempting to "look both ways" on Brexit, with leader Jeremy Corbyn accused of "flip-flopping" over a second referendum.