Jeremy Corbyn has likened Theresa May to King Henry VIII after the Prime Minister steamrollered MPs’ views on Brexit .
Labour’s leader blasted Mrs May with a powerful reference to the six-wives king – who used his “divine right” to defy the Pope.
The Tory leader has fought a Supreme Court appeal to stop MPs voting before she triggers Article 50 , which kick-starts Britain’s two-year exit from the EU.
Mrs May believes she can act with the ‘royal prerogative’ – the Queen’s centuries-old direct power channelled through her.
And she has gone further by repeatedly refusing to guarantee a vote on the final Brexit deal during the Article 50 process.
But Mr Corbyn said a final Brexit deal “would have to come to Parliament.”
He told The Guardian: “She cannot hide behind Henry VIII and the divine rights of the power of kings on this one.
“The idea that on something as major as this the Prime Minister would use the royal prerogative to bypass Parliament is extraordinary. I don’t know where she’s coming from.”
A painting of Henry VIII hangs in Mrs May’s grand reception room in Downing Street – flanked by others of powerful women Elizabeth I and Mary Queen of Scots.
Mr Corbyn’s comments came as he gave interviews to the Guardian and the Daily Mirror looking ahead at 2017.
He told the Mirror his party will be stepping up its campaign to counter the “extremely negative messages” from UKIP in northern heartlands.
But he is refusing to shift his stance on free movement of people – a growing demand of Labour MPs and his trade union backers.
Asked if there should be changes to free movement, he said: “It’s very hard to see how you can be part of the single market without one of the conditions being the right of free movement of people.
“There is an issue about balance of living standards and working conditions across Europe.”
Mr Corbyn urged Labour’s hundreds of thousands of new members to “get on board” and start knocking on doors ahead of polls like the Copeland by-election, where Labour is defending a 2,500 majority.
He said he “can’t pretend” recent Westminster by-election results in Richmond Park and Sleaford, where Labour came third and fourth, were good.
But he accused the media of ignoring a local council by-election which Labour won – by 66 votes on a 17% turnout.
Labour’s Rajash Mehta won 358 votes and Tory Robert Cadman won 292 in Telford’s Horsehay and Lightmoor ward, which was vacant after a Tory councillor’s death.
He told the Guardian: “On the same day we gained a ward in Telford… with a 20% increase in vote, and overall majority on council.
“We’ve never won that ward ever – no media reported that. We held a ward in Lancaster.”
He added: “Results vary; I want to do better.”
Elsewhere Mr Corbyn joked he was unlikely to form an alliance with former Labour PM Tony Blair , who is preparing a return to politics.
“I think the nuanced differences of opinion between me and Tony Blair are quite well known,” he said.
“I don’t see Tony Blair and I working together. I don’t think he does either.”