RESILIENCE: the capacity to recover quickly from difficulties; toughness.

Just when Theresa May thought she might get to stuffing the Christmas goose without another disaster happening, fate dealt her one more blow.

After her near-fatal decision in April to take the voters for granted and call a snap election, life for our embattled Prime Minister has been one episode of turbulence after another.

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Everyone knows that since leading a disastrous Tory campaign she is a weakened leader, who appears to be hobbling from one crisis to another.

Loyalty and trust are the lifeblood of politics. Without them no leader can function. So when times are tough and there are doubters all around, the ability to rely on allies is essential.

Which is why losing Damian Green is such a major blow to Mrs May. The now ex-First Secretary was never regarded as a high-flyer; indeed, few punters would have ever heard of the Kent MP. But Mrs May when she looked around the Cabinet table felt she could have complete trust in him.

So he became the de facto Deputy Prime Minister; her Willie Whitelaw, so to speak.

The nature of his political demise will rankle not just with Mr Green but with Tory colleagues. The two former police officers who made the computer porn claims are now themselves under investigation.

While allegations of sexual harassment must be taken with the utmost seriousness, it was not this that did for Mr Green; nor indeed the fact he may or may not have ogled porn on his computer. His mistake was telling a lie; saying that he did not know about the computer porn when in fact he did. Standards are high for ministers and so he had to go.

On a practical level, Mr Green will have to be replaced as Minister for the Cabinet Office, a key Whitehall co-ordination role, which saw him chair several Cabinet committees and be the Government point-man in the schmoozing of the devolved administrations to drop their opposition to the EU Withdrawal Bill – and thus avoid a constitutional crisis with Scotland and Wales.

Eventually, Mr Green will be replaced in the Cabinet Office; the key question will be whether or not the PM decides to have a deputy, a new First Secretary.

While resilience is an admirable quality in a politician, it is not enough.

Voters like a strong, determined leader but they also demand that the person at the helm of the ship knows where they are going and, in the process, avoid the rocks that might sink them.

Few Tory MPs, while admiring the gutsiness of Mrs May, believe she is the campaigning premier who will save their seats and lead them to victory at the next election.

So the problem for the Conservative Party is not so much the current leader, whose resilience might see her through the Brexit process, but who will be the next one to lead the party into the 2022 General Election.

Amid all the ongoing turbulence of Brexit, it is difficult to see at the moment who that new Tory torch-bearer will be.