In the course of a bizarre two hours before the Liaison Committee, Johnson showed undiminished abilities as a performer.
For the Party to take it off him is one thing; for the Government to recast the committee, or try to, would be quite another.
He would not conciliate the Liaison Committee by promising to meet it three times a year, let alone by holding an inquiry into Cummings.
Others tended either to raise Cummings directly or else stick to their brief. The Science & Technology Chair found a third way.
It should not expect to resurrect ‘business as usual’. The key priority is scrutiny of Government action and managing the crisis.
At each turn to date, they have decided that the best shouldn’t be the enemy of the good. Which suggests that they won’t vote against any heads of agreement – however imperfect.
It should initiate an “International Prosperity Initiative” – to provide an alternative to the “aid” agendas of authoritarian rivals.