This brings one benefit: there is little problem in deflecting from the lamentable testimony before the Covid inquiry of their favourite, disgraced former alleged Prime Minister Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson, who swore an oath to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, and proceeded all too predictably to talk well, but lie badly.
Even seeing Bozo digging himself ever deeper into a hole of his own making, some out there want him back as party leader, conveniently forgetting what happened the last time he was in Number 10. BBC Newsnight’s political editor Nick Watt “has spoken to an ally of Boris Johnson who outlined a 3-year plan to re-install him as the Conservative leader”.
And there’s the rub: Tories fighting not only among one another, but fighting against reality. Bozo’s ratings were down the chute while he was still leader. Were he to be reappointed, the lying to the Queen to prorogue Parliament, trying to rewrite the rules to save Owen Paterson, lying about the Northern Ireland Protocol, lying about Jennifer Arcuri, lying about the Covid pandemic, the infamous VIP Lane, and all the other lying, would be revisited.
But that is where the Tories are at, with another fantasy Rwanda plan cobbled together by James Cleverly and Rishi Sunak, the latter now a LINO (Leader In Name Only), to the background of former failed Home Secretary Suella Braverman carping pointlessly from the sidelines, and immigration minister Robert Jenrick resigning because the Rwanda plan wasn’t cruel enough.
Exactly how anyone would know that Jenrick, an appallingly immodest man with much to be modest about, had resigned was a potentially challenging proposition - until the exchange of letters between Himself and Sunak was made public. Jenrick was typical of the New Conservatism.
As Alex Taylor reminded us, it’s “A man whose moral compass allows him to walk into a centre welcoming traumatized displaced children and ordering it to paint over its colour murals [and] is light years from the decent British values I for one grew up with”. Cat Neilan added context: “Tory MPs discussing all options from letters, to confidence vote - to snap election. Jenrick is ‘another Jenga block removed’, says one”. Another creep removed, more like.
Even the new Rwanda plan ran into problems as soon as it was disseminated. Cleverly, like his predecessor Ms Braverman, had to annotate it with the caution “I am unable to make a statement that, in my view, the provisions of the Safety of Rwanda (Asylum and Immigration) Bill are compatible with the Convention rights, but the Government nevertheless wishes the House to proceed with the Bill”. Then came another blow.
Paul Brand of ITV broke the bad news: “Rwanda government threatens to pull out of the deal if it does not adhere to international law. Hugely problematic - and potentially humiliating - for govt if its partner country decides the deal is too toxic”. Hundreds of millions for nothing. That’s not good enough.
That the pressure on the Tory party was coming from the right was confirmed by Adam Bienkov of Byline Times telling “Conservative MP Mark Francois says it is ‘deeply worrying’ that Robert Jenrick has resigned and accuses James Cleverly of ‘ducking’ questions from MPs”. François (note cedilla under the c) is one of those with a merely transient hold on reality.
Even the Daily Mail is today in despair at the Tory infighting, wailing plaintively “Will the Tories EVER give up fighting each other and start fighting Labour?” But the penny never does drop with the right-wing press: what we see now is an inevitable consequence of what they urged upon the electorate. It is why so many overpaid pundits will wield so little clout come the next election.
The Tory party’s uncontrolled flight into terrain has not occurred. Not yet.
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