Aaron Austin Locke and Robert McIntosh quit their position as the top two office bearers in the Brighton Kemptown and Peacehaven constituency, following “disappointing” local election results and Mr Corbyn’s failure to back a second referendum. Across the City, the Labour Party narrowly won the most seats by a margin of just one, after a surge in support for the Green Party, winning control of 20 of the 54 on offer. Mr McIntosh, who was Constituency Labour Party (CLP) secretary cited the opposition party “lost the chance” to make gains given the huge divisions within the Government.
In his resignation letter seen by PoliticsHome, Mr McIntosh said: “The results of the local elections in Brighton and Hove and across the country were very disappointing.
“I believe we lost the chance of making the gains we should have done when the NEC failed to endorse, unequivocally, a policy of a confirmatory vote on our leaving the EU.”
Mr Locke, who has been a Labour member of Brighton & Hove City Council for over eight years insisted he was “saddened” by the election results and the Party must “fix brexit”.
He also hit out at Mr Corbyn for not keeping to his key promises, which included delivering “honest politics”, his position on Europe and stated he would now “find it difficult” to campaign to support the party in the future.
In his letter Mr Locke said: “I do not regret voting for Jeremy Corbyn twice and I champion that we are now an anti-austerity party. Yet in three areas I admit to being disillusioned, angry and feeling foolish that I thought that things could change.
“For me, Corbyn has failed to deliver his three key promises: 1) He is not offering straight-talking or honest politics. 2) He is not listening to members on key constitutional issues (on Europe and beyond). 3) He has not democratised the Labour party to the extent that it needs at its grass roots.”
He added: “The upshot is that after fighting for three years against all the odds (even nay-sayers in my own party), I am considering my future as a Labour party activist.
“I will find it difficult to campaign for a party or persons who are not explicit in their support for our EU membership, for open borders and freedom of movement.”
Meanwhile, Downing Street has confirmed cross-party talks between the Tories and Labour will continue despite the Government conceding yesterday that the UK will definitely take part in this months European Parliament elections.
However, shadow business secretary Rebecca Long-Bailey dismissed the prospect of an agreement being reached and said there had been no movement towards a customs union.
She said: “We haven’t had any movement or agreement on a customs union, certainly not today, but we will see what the rest of the week holds.
“Our policy position has not changed since the last Labour conference, where a public vote was one of many options on the table, certainly to avoid a Tory deal, a bad Tory Brexit or a no-deal situation.
“Certainly we’ve been exploring the issue of a confirmatory vote in these discussions, but as yet nothing has been agreed.”