This vote must be chalked up as a convincing win for Sunak – and a sign that Johnson and Truss have less support among their colleagues than one might have thought.
Fifty-three Conservatives opposed the tiering plan last December, the largest Covid-related rebellion to date.
But it looks as though some 40 others abstained. That’s a warning shot across the Government’s bows on tax rises.
Most of the action has been over Covid-related divisions. And most of the dissenters are from older intakes.
The Government won the division during yesterday’s consideration of the Trade Bill by 18 votes.
The tellers for the Noes were Christopher Chope and Chris Green. The last major Tory rebellion against Government Covid policy was 53 strong.
Johnson behaved like a boisterous middle-aged games master in baggy shorts who constantly assures us that we are almost at the winning post.