London: British Prime Minister Theresa May on Sunday made bullish efforts to make opposition Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn agree on a cross-party deal to leave the European Union, following poor results for both the parties in the local elections held on Thursday.
The beleaguered Prime Minister dropped her strongest hint, saying she is close to reaching an agreement with Corbyn, and that the two sides should "put their differences aside" and get a Brexit plan over the line in the House of Commons, CNN has reported.
"To the leader of the opposition, I say this: Let's listen to what the voters said in the local elections and put our differences aside for a moment," May wrote. "Let's do a deal."
May's party received a thrashing defeat in local polls this week while the Labour Party also suffered losses, which May said gave "a fresh urgency" to the ongoing cross-party talks.
"We cannot now shrug our shoulders and say it's all too difficult," May said. "We have to find a way to break the deadlock," she added.
The two parties have been in negotiations for over a month to try to broker a Brexit deal that can secure majority support in parliament after May's minority government suffered three defeats on her preferred deal this year and was forced to delay Britain's departure.
However, there is no guarantee that the compromise plan would achieve a majority in the House of Commons, as Corbyn would also face a backlash from within his party if he agreed to help May secure withdrawal from the EU.
The Labour leader has faced pressure from much of his bloc to push for a second referendum and allowing May's pleas without that stipulation would further alienate a significant proportion of his lawmakers and the party's membership.
"The country will never forgive Labour if we make a stitch-up Brexit with the Tories in the backrooms of Westminster," the party's MP David Lammy was quoted as saying on Saturday, demonstrating the unease with the plan on the party's backbenches.
Britain is currently set to leave the European Union on October 31, having twice pushed the date back. But if a cross-party plan were passed by May 22, the withdrawal could take place earlier and the country would not have to hold European elections at the end of the month.
In addition, if a plan is not passed by May 22, May's party is on course to take a further hit in the upcoming European elections.