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Get ready for a general election in just five weeks' time

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Boris Johnson may be the first prime minister since Pitt the Younger in 1793 to lose his first vote in the House of Commons. And he lost it by a larger margin – 27 votes – than anyone had expected.

There may be further twists and turns in the plot to come, but tonight it looks likely that Hilary Benn’s bill to block a no-deal Brexit will be passed by the Commons on Wednesday evening. There are certainly enough “rebel alliance” votes to pass it – the only question is whether there are other devices the government can deploy to stop it. If it is passed, it will complete all its Commons stages in a few hours, and will then go to the House of Lords, which is also likely to pass it, although how long that will........

© Independent