ST HELENS North Labour candidate Conor McGinn said it is “inconceivable” he would not campaign to remain in the EU if there is a second referendum.

Labour’s current Brexit policy is to negotiate a new deal that would see the UK stay in a customs union, keeping close alignment to the single market, within three months of coming to power.

This deal would be put back to the people in a confirmatory referendum, alongside an option to remain in the EU, within six months.

Mr McGinn, who is campaigning to be elected to St Helens North for the third time since 2015, thinks the appetite does exist for the sort of deal Labour wants to strike.

However, he believes there is no deal Labour can renegotiate that will be as good as the deal we currently have as a member of the European Union.

Mr McGinn said: “What I’ve heard from colleagues in Europe and other Labour socialist and social democratic parties is that, the shape of the deal that we want is one that fits with their vision of a social Europe.

“But my honest opinion is, no matter how good a deal we get as a Labour government, it won’t be as good as the deal we have now, which is being in the European Union.

“I realise that’s unpalatable for a lot people, but it’s my view.

“But the reason why we should give the people a final say is because they should get to make the decision about what the future is, and I respect that.”

Mr McGinn said if a referendum was held tomorrow, based on Boris Johnson’s deal, he would campaign to remain in the EU.

However, he would not commit to backing Labour’s renegotiated deal if it came to fruition.

“Obviously I’d have to look at the deal that a Labour government would come back with,” he said.

“But I think it’s inconceivable that I wouldn’t campaign to remain even in that instance because I just don’t believe that we will get a better deal than the one that we have now.”

Mr McGinn first publicly backed a second referendum on Brexit back in January and has come under fire from leave voters in St Helens ever since.

In 2016 Mr McGinn campaigned to remain in the EU but voted to trigger Article 50 following the election.

Mr McGinn said he thought this was the “best thing” for the community he represents and the country as a whole.

“People here and across the country voted to leave,” Mr McGinn said.

“In St Helens, for every three people that voted to leave, two people voted to remain.

“That’s still a majority, that still should be respected but my job is to represent everyone who lives in this constituency.

“But I voted to trigger Article 50 on the basis of the result because that was the only way through which we could leave the European Union.

“Then I went back to the people in 2017 and said I’ve done this, and I want you to give me a mandate again to try and get the best Brexit deal that will protect people here.

“Unfortunately, that hasn’t been possible.”

Mr McGinn said the two withdrawal agreements negotiated by the Conservative government failed to enshrine workers’ rights and consumer rights or provide adequate environmental protection.

He thinks the deals would be “catastrophic” for the community of St Helens North, and believes he has to be honest about that with his constituents.

On the doorsteps, the public’s frustrations around the Brexit deadlock have been clear, the Labour candidate said.

Mr McGinn believes there is a sense of “detachment” from voters for those making the decisions about their lives, whether that is in St Helens Town Hall or in Westminster.

“I understand people are fed up and frustrated,” Mr McGinn said.

“I’ve been saying to people on the doorstep that I have to go to Westminster every week, so I am acutely aware of that.

“But I can’t hand on my heart tell people what they want to hear just because it might be electorally advantageous to me. I have to do what I think is the right thing for the community I represent.

“I’m a Labour Member of Parliament. I’m a socialist and a social democrat – I didn’t go into politics to make people poorer.”