Yes, the negotiation may break down. But some of the playing to the gallery has a ritual element about it, not unlike the staged theatrics of all-in wrestling.
The briefing about turning a Trade Bill vote into one of confidence unnecessarily raises the temperature between Ministers and Conservative MPs.
But a vote on some form of customs union is coming. Might it become a confidence issue?
A new, diplomatically-phrased but still damning enquiry by the Foreign Affairs Committee throws light on the Government’s failures.
“Why is anyone arguing for this bizarre outcome?” If some are proposing it as a way to transition back into the EU, they should be honest enough to say so.
It would make no sense to spurn taking control of our trade policy and leave it with the EU – in which we will no longer have a say.
They offer the best chance to maintain influence in Syria to counter Moscow, but the question of their ongoing conflict with Turkey must be addressed.
It won’t be easy but regional powers can make it happen if they make the right choices.
The negotiations are complicated and deeply technical, but in the end they are about people – and I am determine that we will put people first.”
Most people in both camps are interested in getting the best outcome starting from where we are. Here’s how.
They will want to ask themselves if they really want to spurn last year’s referendum result and the Party’s manifesto commitment.
For all the chatter about the Customs Union, leaving the EU in full is still on course. But May’s bungled election has raised the chances of a disorderly outcome.
He has at every stage seized the initiative and outplayed – then persecuted – his opponents.
The AKP’s status in ACRE, the Tory international alliance, was in doubt – but it survived a vote with Conservative backing.
The Foreign Affairs Committee’s recent report is a good start, but much more work needs to be done.