Labour leadership hopeful Rebecca Long-Bailey won't block indyref2

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UK Labour leadership hopeful Rebecca Long-Bailey has indicated that she would not block a second referendum on Scottish independence if she became Prime Minister.

Ms Long-Bailey spoke out after Scottish party leader Richard Leonard suffered a blow on the issue when the prospect of a special conference failed to win any support at the national executive at the weekend.

Rebecca Long-Bailey won't block indyref2

Rebecca Long-Bailey won't block indyref2

Ms Long, Bailey, who has long been seen as the favourite of the Labour left, insisted she was "fully committed" to the union.

"I don't think that should be shaken in any way, but ultimately the people of Scotland need to make the case," she told Sky News' Sophy Ridge on Sunday.

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"They've got their own Parliament to determine whether they want to push that and that will be for me as a prime minister to review and to look at.

"I wouldn't want to inhibit the democracy of people because that's one of the most fundamental pillars that we're proud of in this country."

Scottish Labour has agreed to conduct a review of the losses it sustained in the general election, despite talk the party was poised to support a second independence referendum.

Reports previously suggested Richard Leonard's party could be "more willing to consider supporting a second referendum" if it was in the form of a multi-option ballot, featuring a federal alternative.

Reports previously suggested Richard Leonard's party could be "more willing to consider supporting a second referendum" if it was in the form of a multi-option ballot, featuring a federal alternative.

However there was no formal proposal on the issue discussed at a meeting of Scottish Labour's executive committee in Glasgow on Saturday, and it will instead be the subject of an "away day" in the near future.

The meeting did approve the election review, with its findings expected in March.

Ian Murray is now the only Labour MP in Scotland after his re-election in Edinburgh South, as the party suffered heavy losses on December 12.

After Saturday's meeting, Mr Leonard said: "Representatives of all sections of our party - constituency delegates, trade unions, socialist societies and elected representatives - agreed to consult on the outcome of last month's general election.

"As part of that, our policy on federalism will be developed to ensure that it resonates with people across Scotland.

"The result of this consultation will form the basis of the approach Scottish Labour will take as we look forward to putting our positive case before the people of Scotland at the 2021 Holyrood election.

"As I set out shortly after last month's election, I want Scottish Labour to hold a swift, evidence-based review of the result and the lessons we must learn as a party.

"We must in particular consider our position on the constitutional questions which dominated the general election campaign - namely Scotland's constitutional future and our relationship with the European Union - drawing on our tradition as the party of devolution."

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