A shameful waste of money

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How barmy is this? And how scandalous, too?

The Government is being forced to pour millions of pounds of taxpayers’ money down the drain in order to take part in the EU parliamentary elections - the last thing in the world it wanted to do. And why? Because according to the grandees in Brussels, we are legally bound to do so - even though, if Brexit is ever concluded, the UK’s new MEPs may never be able to take their parliamentary seats. This wasteful farce underlines the truth of those hallowed words of the Charles Dickens character Mr Bumble in Oliver Twist: “The law is a ass ... a idiot.”

This is merely the latest humiliation for the UK in the sad and sorry saga of Brexit.

Over the years, Governments of all complexions have wasted billions of pounds of public money, often through sheer incompetence or failure to think policies through properly. Differently in this case, everyone knows in advance that this is simply going to become a vast bonfire of public money - a shameful act of wastefulness that is being forced upon us.

Some argue that the benefits of this are to show roughly the percentage of voters pro or anti-Brexit. But we had a referendum to tell us that - and that is the basis on which all our negotiations should stand.

No wonder the electorate is in a fury about the seeming incompetence of UK politicians to stand up to the Brussels negotiators.

n The Prime Minister has not yet given any precise details about the timing of her plan to quit the Tory leadership and 10 Downing Street. One is tempted to ask who would want to take on that job now, with the Conservative Party almost in a state of civil war, while the nation is plagued with the seemingly never-ending tragi-comedy of Brexit. Yet, there are no fewer than 17 people who have expressed a desire to succeed her. Boris Johnson appears top of the list, with people like Michael Gove and Dominic Raab hot on his heels. Another would-be leader, Liz Truss, Chief Secretary to the Treasury, pictured, complains: “You have to put yourself forward - no one else will.” Hardly surprising when most of her mates are hankering after the same prize, too.