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The key is the Fixed-term Parliaments Act
Today started with reports that Downing Street had “let it be known” that Theresa May would make votes on the Customs Union a matter of “confidence.” The implication seemed to be that if she lost she would call a general election. By mid-morning officials had rowed back.
Making votes in parliament a matter of “confidence” in the government used to be one of the prime minister’s biggest sticks. They could threaten backbenchers that if they didn’t fall into line they would…
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