Press play to listen to this article By TOM MCTAGUE PRESENTED BY LLOYDS BANKING GROUP Send tips here | Subscribe for free | Listen to Playbook and view in your browser Good Monday morning. This is Tom McTague, POLITICO’s chief U.K. correspondent, Playbooking in Jack’s stead. There are now 39 days until Brexit Day. DRIVING THE DAY PRESSURE COOKER: Westminster wakes this morning to the incessant din of Labour Party split stories (and Brexit, obviously). Talk of an imminent breakaway “gang of five” exploded on Twitter late last night, with well-connected lobby hacks claiming it could come as early as today. On the BBC’s Westminster Hour, Labour MP Stephen Kinnock said a split was now unavoidable. “I say with regret that, yes, there will be some kind of splintering,” he said. Playbook, alongside many other lobby hacks, was told last week that this was the week it really would happen, but reserved judgement. The website and Corbyn mouthpiece Skwawkbox, which has close ties to the Labour leader’s office, last night published a story saying the party now expected five MPs to leave today. Former Corbyn aide Matt Zarb-Cousin listed Chuka Umunna, Chris Leslie, Angela Smith, Ian Austin and Mike Gapes as MPs who… Read full this story
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