Brexit: May scrambles to get support for her deal ahead of vote next week – Politics live | Politics

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Finally. Theresa May had found a vote she could win. A narrow two-vote victory. A largely pyrrhic victory, as the government had won on a motion to extend article 50 it had never actually wanted to put to the house in the first place. Even when the Leader In Name Only is winning, she still contrives to lose. Another crank of the pathos handle. The government still just about had control of the parliamentary timetable. For a few more days at least.

Not that Lino took any pleasure in the result. No smile escaped her lips, no signifier of relief. Just a hunched figure, lost in a near catatonic state. She clearly hates her life almost as much as she hates many of her colleagues. Hating is one of the few things she does well. The body language between her and Philip Hammond was of a couple who had long since realised there had never been two of them in this relationship. She left long before the final result was declared.

With Lino’s voice on either life support or a damage limitation exercise – take your pick – it had been left to the Cabinet Office minister, David Lidington, to open the latest Brexit debate the government had been hoping to avoid. He looked like a man who knew he had drawn the short straw.

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