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Watch: James Cleverly fumbles Rwanda victory lap

(Photo by James Manning - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

It was a good win last night for the Prime Minister and Home Secretary James Cleverly. The government managed to keep the number of Tory abstentions down in order to enable the Rwanda Bill to progress to its next stage. But on this morning’s media round, Cleverly has not been quite as fluent as last night’s whipping operation.

On Good Morning Britain, Cleverly faced a barrage of questioning from Ed Balls — and struggled to hold his own, tripping over his words like nobody’s business. When asked for specifics on the bill, the Home Secretary appeared more than a little, er, discombobulated…

Then came the turn of Sky News. But after a tough morning of questioning and a recent reshuffle, Cleverly couldn’t seem to quite get a handle on Sunak’s latest ministerial merry-go-round as he forgot which brief he actually has. ‘Different week, different job!’ quipped presenter Kay Burley. ‘I know, I’m still getting used to it…’ replied the Home Secretary wearily.

Perhaps an extra nightcap to celebrate last night’s result is the reason for Cleverly’s stumbles this morning…

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Steerpike is The Spectator's gossip columnist, serving up the latest tittle tattle from Westminster and beyond. Email tips to or message @MrSteerpike

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