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Sunday 9 July

With the summer recess fast approaching the prominence of politics shows on the BBC and Sky (ITV has already gone into hibernation), fell behind backstabbing plots revealed in the Sunday papers.  

Comments made by former Tory Chief Whip Andrew Mitchell dealing another blow to Theresa May’s teetering leadership status dominated the morning newsfeed. At a private dinner of Conservative MPs Mitchell, a close ally of the Party’s most popular MP Brexit Secretary David Davis, is reported to have said the Prime Minister is effectively dead in the water.

“He said she was weak, had lost her authority, couldn’t go on and we needed a new leader. Some of us were very surprised and disagreed with him,” said one of the MPs attendant at the dinner.

Mitchell’s comments, which were supposed to have been made in the utmost confidence have sparked renewed speculation on whether Theresa May will remain in place in the short or medium term. The man himself immediately quashed the rumours without denying having made the comments.

However, opposing whispers have emerged of Mitchell instructing fellow Davis allies eager to install the Brexit Secretary at number 10 to “go and lie down in a darkened room and then take a holiday”.

Arch-Remainer David Lidington led the patch-up operation, appearing on both Sky News and the Andrew Marr show where he dismissed the story on the grounds that MPs are quaffing on excessive amounts of prosecco at too many summer parties and indulging in summer nonsense rather acting with serious intent.

But what is politics if it is not about outmanoeuvring your opponents at every available opportunity. Indeed, two separate plots to destabilise a true Brexit are afoot. Nicky Morgan (her again) is at the helm of a campaign to keep Britain under the ECJ’s cosh on the grounds that we need to remain signatories to Euratom, a more precise version of the Trojan horse strategy deployed by Sir Keir Starmer in a letter published in the FT earlier in the week.

“There may be some merit in just thinking about the detail of our future relationship with the ECJ before we draw a line through the relationship entirely,” said Morgan. By ‘some’, she means a lot.

The former cabinet minister’s ECJ crusade does not mean dark forces on the Remain side have yet given up hope on staying in the Single Market however. David Jones, who was scandalously ejected from the Department for Exiting the European Union last month, claims, “fanatically pro-EU MPs, both Labour and misguided Tory ones, too, have hatched a cunning plot” to water-down the Prime Minister’s Brexit stance.

“Parliament exists to reflect and enact the will of the people – not to subvert it. But amid the heat of high summer, it looks very much as if a plot is under way at Westminster,” we could not agree more.

The real Brexit battles are currently being fought inside both leading parties, but the Liberal Democrats and the BBC do not appear to have received the memo. The sole contender to take Tim Farron’s old spot, Vince Cable opened the batting on Marr this morning. He believes Britain could remain in the EU, a shockingly undemocratic position efficiently swatted away by Brexiteer Owen Paterson, who spoke a few hours later on the BBC’s Sunday Politics.