The knives were out late last night and many were ready to offer Hilary Armstrong’s head on a silver plate to Blair (who was having an early night). The truth is that now Blair is entering his John Major phase it will be impossible to whip a fundamentally rebellious Labour party, aided and abetted by Tory/LibDem tactics.
We have been due a reshuffle since Blunkett went in early November, the accompanying narrative will all be about the direction of Brownies and Blairites on the greasy pole. Bring it on.UPDATE : Cameron was merciless towards her at PMQs, she looked like she had swallowed a lemon. To add to the whip’s office’s woes, the speaker told off another Labour whip for barracking Cameron. Cameron jumped on that with a crack at the whip’s expense.
“This is, at its heart, a matter of public trust,” he told the PM, concluding: “I cannot reconcile the terms of the proposed deal with the promises we made to the country in our manifesto at the last election… I believe that the regulatory regime proposed for Northern Ireland presents a very real threat to the integrity of the United Kingdom. I cannot support an indefinite backstop arrangement, where the EU holds a veto over our ability to exit…”