It was almost enough to cast you under the spell of Deja Vu.

The whips in the attack, the frowning eyebrows, the well-known list of high-ranking MPs who keep making the same Brexit speeches, variations on a similar theme. At the climax, accompanied by the collective squeaking time of the crunch division of the chamber.

Yes, today's vote on the levy Labor inspection of the order paper on 25 June I felt like every day in the first four months of this year.

Ever since Theresa May's third and final attempt to enforce their withdrawal agreement, Parliament's battlefield, once littered with the rubble of a daily war of attrition, has been relatively quiet. After the resignation of Ms. May, the crosshairs switched to the Tory leadership race and its multitude of candidates.

Theresa May
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Theresa May's successor has to deal with a hostile parliament

But today it was recalled that not all – and by no means all – problems of the Tories lie at the feet of the Prime Minister.

The stasis, the repeated defeats spring from the unshakeable number calculus in parliament. They all derive from the fact that unlike most other governments, this government can guarantee its victory over nothing at Commons, not to mention something as complex and controversial as the Brexit.

It was a reminder that this hostile parliament, with its tightly balanced arithmetic, is waiting for anyone who has the (un) luck to replace Mrs. May.



Parliament voted against Labor taking control of the deal to allow for a no-deal ban. United Kingdom and Gibraltar European Union membership referendum



Corbyn: "You will not cheer in September"

On the Tory banks, there was great concern that the Commons would suffer another defeat. The prime minister and her whips, however, have crushed one last modest victory, a kind of consolation prize.

This means that the Labor Party will not control the order paper on June 25th. This means that Parliament will not be able to take action to prevent Brexit without agreement on that date, or probably before the summer break.

The government will be pleased that it has (but gently) consolidated the power of the conservatives. that they have shown that they can still command (almost) the most basic functions of the executive: control over what the commons do. Brexiter are happy that their dream, their basic reflex of a no-deal Brexit, remains alive.

But how long? For if tough Brexiters believe that today's vote shows that there is no majority in parliament to stop a Brexit without agreement, they will be deeply disappointed. Many conservative ministers who are on the government payroll would not support today's request because a) this happens in the name of Jeremy Corbyn, b) they feel they have not yet done so.

Worker leader Jeremy Corbyn
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Some voted against the proposal because of Labor leader Jeremy Corbyn

The multiple polls in the first four months of the year have shown that Tory Remainer MPs only move when they feel that all options have been exhausted. They will not vote against (and resign) their own whip until they absolutely have to. With the extension to October, this date was postponed for a long time.

However, if Boris Johnson wins, someone who has committed himself to a no-deal if necessary or even at will, he should push for it, this appointment is sure to come. and if so, many of the MPs who are currently ministers and need to vote with a whip may no longer have ministers and can vote with their conscience.

But maybe today's biggest lesson is not so much about the lower house order paper, but about whether there's going to be an order paper for this lower house for much longer.

In the discussion, it was clear that there are several Conservative MPs who take the psychological steps towards the idea of ​​voting in a vote of confidence in their own government.

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Boris Johnson is someone who feels obligated, if necessary – or even as a preference

Dominic Grieve spoke of his desire to tell his children and grandchildren that he had done everything possible to prevent a Brexit without agreement.

He does not speak for many, but for enough; The government's influence on the commons is so weak that it takes only a handful (only two or three) Tories to speak up, join the opposition as an independent, and overthrow the government.

It's a cliché to say that you can not predict anything in politics, but if I had to bet, I'd say that's exactly what we're going to – with one election, the third in four years that follows.

The drama of the first four months of the year may seem like nothing to the last.