Everything has changed

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It’s a weird political era when the biggest battle in UK politics would appear to be between two men named Dominic.

Stand aside Boris. You are but a bit-part player in this.

Stand aside Jeremy as well. No one can be sure what your role might be, because you still aren’t.

Instead bring on Dominic Cummings and Dominic Grieve.

One is a political adviser, but with credit given for engineering the victory of the Leave campaign, against all the odds, including his own.

The other is a Tory toff, who once held minor ministerial office. And yet it does appear that they are the principle actors in the single biggest issue of our moment, which is whether or not we leave the EU without a deal on 31 October.

The issue is, rather oddly given Leave’s noted views on the issue, about expertise. I summarise, but the face off us between Cummings’ expertise in off-piste politics that has a remarkable contempt for the rule of law implicit in it, and Grieve’s legally trained mind set that is determined to uphold what he thinks to be the UK constitution.

The issues at stake could not be bigger. The disaster of No Deal is only the first of them. More important is whether or not parliament matters. And given that his has been the bedrock of our supposed democracy for centuries it is not unfair to call this a constitutional crisis.

Unsurprisingly I think parliament must prevail in this battle. I am not at all sure it will.

I do not think we can rely on Johnson, under the influence of Cummings, to play by any known rules.

I think we can rely on the Labour leadership to be tribal, which means there will be no guarantee that they will cooperate for a greater good when that is clearly required of them, solely in the short term. 

And what might play out, how and when, is as yet unknown. It depends very largely on the wits of the two Dominics, I think.

But some things are known. They’re worth noting.

Nothing will be the same again. One side will come out reinforced by this. Heaven help us if it is No. 10.

Politics will be different. Blue-on-blue in-fighting makes it very clear how far we have gone in the process of party loyalty failing. We will witness the same in Labour ranks.

The alienation of voters from Westminster will increase. Whichever side wins the other will be very angry.

Nationalism - and the quite rational desire to be done with this English problem - which is what it is - will grow in strength.

And real issues will continue to be ignored whilst this Tory manufactured crisis is dealt with. Effective government continues to be nigh on impossible.

In the midst of which I still strongly suspect we will leave the EU, quite possibly without a deal, because the wrong Dom holds most of the good cards as I read it. 

The result, come what may, is that everything will change. I cannot guarantee for the better.