It could be that by the end of week Theresa May will have secured the breakthrough which will allow the Brexit talks to move to our future trading relationship.
But there is no disguising the total hash she has made of the negotiations so far.
The debacle yesterday was not a unique moment of incompetence but part of a shambolic pattern by a Prime Minister who has taken the wrong turn at every stage.
First, there was her unilateral interpretation of the referendum result which she determined, without consultation, as a vote to leave the single market, customs union and to end ECJ jurisdiction.
Then there was the unseemly haste to trigger Article 50 without any agreement within Cabinet or Parliament on what should replace the current arrangement.
And finally, there was the pie-in-the-sky assumption that decades of political and economic integration could be untangled and a new set of trading rules established in their place within the two-year time limit.
To add to the litany of failures, the Prime Minister then weakened her own negotiating hand by calling a general election that left her reliant on ten eurosceptic DUP MPs for her survival.
These ten MPs yesterday sunk the basis of a deal which could have allowed us to progress to trade negotiations and in the process provided voters with a hollow laugh as they remembered those Tory warnings of how Nicola Sturgeon would pull the strings in a ‘coalition of chaos’ with Labour.
Mrs May is now in a bind.
The Brexit talks will collapse if the UK imposes a hard border in Ireland .
The DUP-Tory pact will collapse if the Government tries to shift the border to the Irish Sea.
The Prime Minister could walk away but that…