The CCHQ press office email press clippings and media snippets to MPs some four of five times a day. They don’t normally make for much of read, but their surprisingly candid verdict on today’s proceedings has brought a smile one chunk of the Tory benches:
Lead Story: David Cameron suffers biggest Conservative rebellion over Europe
Clips: PM, Nick Clegg MP, Adam Holloway MP (debate footage), Tim Montgomerie (Conservative Home)
Commentary: The PM says there is no bad blood or bitterness over Conservative Commons rebellion over Europe. Back bench motion prompted after petition signed by 100,000. In total 81 Conservative MPs defied three line whip voted for referendum. Mr Cameron said opposing vote right thing for the country.
The full briefing then quotes various pundits and hacks before concluding:
Verdict: PM loss
That would explain the “no bad blood, no rancour, no bitterness” bridge building then…