The May-Davis partnership used to be one of the strongest aspects of the government. She had brought him back from the political wilderness to be Brexit Secretary, and he was loyally working on the strategy for the negotiations. Even after the election went so wrong, Davis raced down to London to see her.
But, as I say in the Sun today, Cabinet Minister reports that there are now tensions in this relationship. ‘The chemistry is not good now’, one tells me. Another says ‘that relationship has cooled’.
The cause of the problem is Davis’ allies touting him for the leadership, and sooner rather than later. Those close to May don’t know if Davis is actively encouraging this. But they do think that he could stop it if he wanted to—and are infuriated that he isn’t doing so.
This situation needs sorting. Next week, Davis will be heading to Brussels for the next stage of Brexit discussions. Going into these talks, it is a recipe for disaster to have the Prime Minister wondering if her top negotiator is gunning for her job.