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Struggling: David Cameron today.

Struggling: David Cameron today.

David Cameron has been forced into a humiliating climbdown over his threat to sack Tory ministers if they didn’t back his deal with the European Union – whatever that deal might be.

He reckons his words were “misinterpreted”.

The Writer reckons that is very funny indeed!

Cameron told reporters yesterday: “I’ve been very clear, which is I’ve said that if you want to be part of the government, you have to take the view that we are engaged in an exercise of renegotiation to have a referendum, and that will lead to a successful outcome.” [boldings mine]

This was a repeat of what he told Andrew Marr in January: “Well, there are Conservative Members of Parliament who want the leave the European Union come what may, but if you’re part of the government, then clearly you’re part of the team that is aiming for the renegotiation.”

Asked by Marr if this meant there would not be a free vote, as Labour allowed in the 1970s, Cameron replied unequivocally:”No, I’ve set out that very clearly in the past.”

Now he’s saying that Marr interrupted him so much that his comments were not clear.

They seem clear enough to this writer!

And they’re saying that this is a Prime Minister who has talked himself into a corner.

The Sunday Times’s Tim Shipman tweeted that this issue goes back three years, to when Downing Street said ministers would be free to campaign for the UK to leave the EU – and the next day Cameron said they would not.

He’s still saying there won’t be a free vote – possibly because he sees it as a way of getting rid of his more awkward ministers.

But that will play havoc with his standing among backbenchers – especially the 50 eurosceptics who are already campaigning for a much more radical approach.

Finally, Cameron told journalists that – if they were unclear on anything – they should ask.

Fine words, from the man who has a habit of making statements and then walking away while questions fly towards his back!

Follow me on Twitter: @MidWalesMike

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