Wednesday, 7 February 2018

The Outermost Fringe?

Last night's Channel 4 News featured Nicky Morgan and Jess Phillips. It would be easy to dismiss each of them as being on the outermost fringe of her party. But in fact, while Phillips's openly declared aspiration to the Leadership is laughable, Morgan is one of more MPs than the DUP has who hold the real balance of power. The next Leader of the Conservative Party will have to be acceptable to them.

Meaning that it is Phillips's friend, Jacob Rees-Mogg, who stands, like Boris Johnson, absolutely no chance of ever being a duly nominated candidate for that Leadership. To put the belt and braces on that, the DUP needs to be asked to state explicitly that it would never support a Prime Minister whose adultery had resulted in an abortion.

The DUP would be most unlikely to support a Catholic Prime Minister at all, but Rees-Mogg does have questions to answer about his shares in a company that manufactures and sells drugs that, whether or not they were developed or even officially retailed for abortion, are being put to that use to his certain knowledge.

In any case, the political fact of the matter is that no party led by an opponent either of abortion or of same-sex marriage, regardless of whether or not it intended to whip such issues or even to hold parliamentary votes on them at all, could still win any constituency in England, Scotland or Wales. If you doubt that, then tell me which constituency, exactly, would now give the First Past the Post spot to a party whose candidate for Prime Minister was of those views.

While it is possible that abortion remains a different matter, for now, even the DUP retains its seats in spite of its position on same-sex marriage rather than because of that position. In a referendum, not that I am advocating such a thing, same-sex marriage would pass in every part of Northern Ireland by an enormous margin.

The electoral situation would then be as it is in Great Britain: individual exceptions might just about be tolerated, but support would be absolutely compulsory for anything that wished to be an electorally viable political party, as such, and therefore also for every Party Leader personally. Ho, hum. Jesus told us to expect a lot worse, and He has been true to His Word.

As for Jess Phillips, she made her political name by claiming to have told Diane Abbott to "f*ck off". That was bad enough in itself. But even that turns out to have been a lie. Away with her.

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