Why the Brown climbdown (of a sort) over the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill?
Well, he could have lost Ruth Kelly and hardly noticed. But Des Browne is both his link to the Forces and his man in Scotland, important to any Prime Minister, and especially to this one.
And Paul Murphy is being lined up to be the ultra-Unionist hardman Secretary of State for Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland combined. Nobody else who could do this has Cabinet experience. So he is indispensable. As we have just seen.