THERESA MAY was always signing up for the political equivalent of Mission: Impossible when she became Prime Minister and then lost her Commons majority in a snap election. It explains why, at a time of record employment, that she’s facing increasing pressure from her own party to resign.
Yet, judging by the combative exchanges at Prime Minister’s Questions when Mrs May used every opportunity to speak about the economy, rather than Europe, the Tory leader continues to show more resilience than many in her mutinous party.
For, while backbench MPs plot Mrs May’s downfall, she’s trying to get to grips with the small matter of negotiating Britain’s exit from the European Union in a way that does not put jobs, or living standards, at unnecessary risk.
This is not the time for the Tories to change leader. Not only would a convoluted contest throw the Brexit negotiations into disarray, but the same problem would remain – how to get any EU deal through a Parliament which is even more divided than the UK.
To date, the likes of Jacob Rees-Mogg, Boris Johnson and David Davis have not shown how they can enact their ideologically pure Brexit – this week’s photograph of the triumvirate, each with their head in their hands, told its own story. They do not have any answers, hence their attempts to undermine Mrs May instead.
And neither, frankly, do Labour. For, while Jeremy Corbyn spoke with rare passion at PMQs about the plight of the poor, the fact he focused on welfare reform – rather than Brexit splits – suggested that he, too, does not have an alternative plan that could actually pass Parliament.
Until anyone can come up with an approach acceptable to Britain and the EU, Mrs May should be left to get on with the job and see what kind of Brexit deal is possible. And that is what voters expect her – and her party – to do.