Daniel Zeichner resigns as Shadow Secretary to vote for a pro-Remain amendment to Queen's Speech

Image credit: sean-hickin via Flickr

Labour MP for Cambridge, Daniel Zeichner, who was re-elected in this month's general elections, has stepped down from his post as Shadow Transport Minister in order to vote for an amendment to the Queen's Speech in favour of the European Single Market. 

Zeichner has been both vocal and consistent in his stance on leaving the EU, having voted consistently to remain in the EU. His stand is both political, representing a constituency for which 74% of its population voted to remain, and personal, as he discussed in an interview with TCS leading up to the elections. For Zeichner, "My father was originally from Vienna in Austria, and my English side of the family – my mother’s side – is from Cambridge. So in a way, I kind of feel that through my lifetime, Britain’s relationship with Europe has been at the heart of politics, and I feel my life has embodied that, really."

He tweeted earlier today, 'I'm a passionate pro-European & straight-forward politician so I've taken hard decision to resign as shadow minister to back Single Market.'

The amendment in question was tabled by Labour MP for Streatham, Chuka Umunna, and has been supported by 50 Labour MPs, comprising one fifth of Corbyn's party in the Commons. It 'mostly supported party policy, but said explicitly the UK should remain in the single market and in the customs union.'

Zeichner's resignation comes as part of a wider split in the Labour party in the Commons, with Anushka Asthana of the Guardian tweeting earlier today, "Labour confirms that all frontbenchers who voted against government's demand for abstention on single market vote have been SACKED."

As of 5:55pm on Thursday, June 29th, four Labour frontbenchers have been sacked or quit for backing the amendment: Zeichner resigned, while Catherine West, Ruth Cadbury and Andrew Francis Slaughter were fired. 

 

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