A plan for presenting a Brexit deal?

Theresa May Image copyright EPA

Cabinet ministers strained to sound optimistic after cabinet today.

But notes passed to the BBC suggest that ministers are not where they wanted to be, and had even hoped to review the Brexit divorce deal today, and announce decisive progress this week.

The leaked plan appears to be a detailed blueprint of how Number 10 and the government hope to sell a deal to Parliament and to the public, with an almost day-by-day, blow-by-blow guide.

The notes say ministers would seek to claim "measured success", a deal that is "good for everyone", rather than claiming a victory with champagne corks popping.

It says there would be a major speech from Theresa May at a conference in the middle of the month, endorsements from foreign leaders and former foreign secretaries, and businesses coming on board.

And it then sketches out how the debates would run in Parliament with just under three weeks from cabinet sign-off to a final vote in the House of Commons.

A government spokesman described some of the note as "childish" and denied that it was an official document.

But it is clear that there are advanced discussions about how to get the deal through Parliament and convince the public if, and when, it is done.

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