Sunday Shows Round-Up: Tory Manoeuvres And Second Brexit Referendum Rumours

Between Tory backbenchers trying to topple Theresa May and the prime minister pulling the long-awaited vote on her Brexit deal, this week in Westminster has been a rollercoaster. 

As ministers took to the airwaves on Sunday morning, with just one week of parliament left before Christmas, here is where we stand: 

  • Theresa May has returned from Brussels bruised and empty-handed after a failed last-ditch bid to secure changes to her Brexit deal 

  • Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt fancies a “crack” at being prime minister and says the UK would “flourish” without a deal

  • Home Secretary Sajid Javid is launching a plan to cut EU immigration by 80% post-Brexit, in a sign that he too is making a tilt at the Tory leadership

  • In remain land, backbench Labour MPs have been in talks with Tories over backing a second referendum 

  • Independent MP and Brexiteer Frank Field is calling on party leaders to back a debate in parliament that would see MPs choose between six options on the EU

  • Theresa May is not for turning as she accuses Tony Blair of “an insult to the office he once held” by demanding she back a so-called people’s vote

  • Several reports suggest that Labour could table a vote of no-confidence in the government this week which could trigger a general election

So, let’s take one potential political explosion at a time …. 

Is A Second Referendum Happening? 

Education Secretary Damian Hinds was the minister who drew the short straw as he was the first from the cabinet to face questions.

As the PM’s defacto deputy PM David Lidington denied reports he and others were discussing a re-run with Labour MPs, Hinds insisted to Sky News’ Sophy Ridge that a second referendum would be “divisive”. 

Hinds also said there was not a majority for a Canada-style free trade deal or a soft Brexit or “Norway plus”, adding that the only way forward was to back the PM. 

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