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Jeremy Corbyn: “The prime minister… doesn’t even have the authority of her own party.”

Theresa May might have gone to the EU to seek help to get her duff Brexit agreement through the UK Parliament, but from the way MPs spoke about her, she would have been well-advised never to return.

Jeremy Corbyn’s emergency debate on her decision to postpone the “meaningful vote” on her deal demonstrated that there was little support for her in the House of Commons:

Rachael Swindon’s tweet isn’t quite accurate. Mr Corbyn’s motion was “that this House has considered the Prime Minister’s unprecedented decision not to proceed with the final two days of debate and the meaningful vote, despite the House’s Order of Tuesday 4 December 2018, and her failure to allow this House to express its view on the Government’s deal or her proposed negotiating objectives, without the agreement of this House”.

Alongside every other MP who voted on the motion, he voted against it, even though he had proposed it, to signal displeasure at Mrs May’s decision. So it was voted down by 299 votes to none, with the government not asking its MPs to take part.

The only Tory who did, Anna Soubry, voted with the opposition.

Opening the debate, Mr Corbyn said:

Mr Corbyn gained support for his viewpoint from an unexpected, foot-in-mouth, source.

Philip Hammond, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, made the unforced error during Treasury questions, earlier in the December 11 Commons session – and was upbraided for it by Speaker John Bercow, as you can see in the following amusing clip by The Agitator:

No doubt some in the Conservative Party will use the incident to ramp up the feud between the Conservatives and Mr Bercow – Leader of the House Andrea Leadsom has already claimed his words show “bias” due to his own views on Brexit.

But here he was only making the obvious point – as were the 299 MPs who voted in the emergency debate – that Parliament has not been allowed to vote on Mrs May’s Brexit deal.

Mr Corbyn said: “The Government need either to bring a vote here, or to get out of the way and let somebody else take this issue seriously and negotiate properly on behalf of this country.”

Mrs May has already returned from her begging trip to Europe, empty-handed. Even the dimmest of the Tory loyalists must realise by now that she has nothing to offer that can possibly make her deal acceptable.

In the meantime, it seems a ‘no confidence’ vote in her leadership has been triggered by her own MPs.

Will she bring the vote that Mr Corbyn demanded? No.

But this will only provide further confirmation of her uselessness to Conservative MPs who may soon vote on whether to allow her to continue as leader.

Mrs May has put herself between a rock and a hard place. Let us hope they crush her.

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