Responding to the local election results, Bridget Phillipson, Labour MP for Houghton & Sunderland South and a leading supporter of the People’s Vote campaign, said:
“Council elections are always about local issues but Brexit was the elephant in the room and no one can deny it played a key part in Labour’s disappointing performance last night.
“In my city of Sunderland, there was a big swing against us to the Liberal Democrats and the Greens.
“Too often places that voted for Brexit back in 2016 like Sunderland get caricatured by the media as if everyone voted Leave. But the majority of Labour voters now want a People’s Vote on Brexit and would vote to stay in the EU given the chance.
“I fear Labour’s position has been too hesitant and lacking in clarity over the past few months, depressing support among our voters at a time when they expect strength and leadership from my party rather than fudge.”