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The government may soon strike an EU deal. Labour must abstain on it

Active endorsement is out of the question. But to vote against an agreement would be an act of destruction

By Jonathan Lis  

Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire/PA Images

Parliament today votes on an issue of national importance. The matter has become bitterly contested, with thousands of lives and livelihoods at stake. Labour has chosen to abstain. The issue, of course, is the tiered coronavirus restrictions, and the party has an excellent case. It cannot vote against restrictions, which would simply let the virus rip; but, given the government’s woeful mishandling of recent measures, it does not want to actively endorse the new regime either. In a parliamentary system, abstention is a blunt…

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