There’s nothing like a bit of blatant opportunism to make you feel like normal service is finally resuming in the world of British politics.
What was the point in Monday’s House of Commons debate on Trident?
There wasn’t one. Well, certainly not one related to the defence of the realm.
A vote in principle on renewing the nuclear deterrent, essentially what the latest division was, went ahead in 2007.
Absolutely nothing will now happen as a result of MPs’ latest expression of their feelings.
No new funding has been authorised.
No new mechanisms for the delivery or oversight of the programme have been agreed.
The very fact specialists in Fife are already constructing launch-pads for the deadly missiles on the new nuclear submarines, as revealed by The Courier last year, suggests the final “gateway” vote, when it eventually comes, is seen as a formality at best by the MoD.
Make no mistake, this is an opportunity for the Conservative Party to unite and the Labour Party to further disintegrate into disarray.
With a new Prime Minister and a completely revamped Cabinet, following the purge of the David Cameron loyalists, this is exactly the sort of issue which the Tories can easily agree upon.
Theresa May’s decision to lead the debate, rather than Defence Secretary Michael Fallon, is also pointed.
Now her MPs band together in her first Commons appearance as their leader.
Corbyn says Trident should be ditched because “it is hopelessly antiquated and ineffective…er, hang on…no…”
— Have I Got News For You (@haveigotnews) July 18, 2016
Meanwhile, Labour flounder with some members voting for renewal, some stating their opposition to it and others abstaining because they realise the vote is essentially worthless.
There is always likely to be splits in the opposition given the subject matter but this reaction further illustrates the chaos engulfing the party at this moment in time.
The SNP, to their credit, have argued this vote is taking place at the wrong time, given its ultimate pointlessness.
It has not stopped them making political capital out of the situation, though, particularly from Labour’s idiocy.
— Sunday with Paterson (@RidgeOnSunday) July 17, 2016
Two parties look strong, principled and united. One looks weak and divided.
And our country is no safer for any of it.