But it is hard to see how he can become leader again in this Parliament, in which so many of his own MPs refused to serve under him.
Blackford attacked the Labour leader for “desperately trying to out-Brexit the Prime Minister”. Can it be that Labour is doing better in Scotland and the Nats are starting to feel worried?
Conservatives should be careful not to assume that all Hindus are Thatcherites in waiting. Some regard standing up to Modi, and keeping his anti-Muslim politics out of Britain, as much more important.
Tories will read the story of his ascent to high office with enormous pleasure – for it amounts to a vindication of the United Kingdom.
He is tipped by some as a future Prime Minister, but is more plausibly seen as a future Chancellor.