Who wins by having Jeremy Corbyn on the ballot paper for the Labour leadership?
The left-wing firebrand is obviously not going to win but having him on the hustings serves the purposes of the leadership favourite, Andy Burnham, quite well.
Burnham supporters appear to have lent their votes to Corbyn, because having Corbyn on the stage makes Burnham look quite moderate and centrist.
If that is Burnham’s thinking it amounts to a one-move chess strategy.
In a world where there is nothing that can’t be construed as good news for the SNP the real winner of having Corbyn on the ballot paper is, you guessed it, the SNP.
Corbyn’s anti-nuclear, anti-austerity, anti-deficit agenda slots perfectly into the SNP’s own platform.
When, not if, the rank and file of the Labour party reject his prospectus the SNP will rejoice.
One of the big tasks for the SNP over the next year is assuring Labour voters they made the right decision in backing them at the general election.
Corbyn’s defeat will be a signal for the SNP to claim Labour has lost its socialist “heart and soul” while it continues with a determined centrist approach to governing Scotland.
Why would you ever vote for them again, the SNP will ask the former Labour supporters it has peeled off by positioning itself as being more left-wing than Scottish Labour?
Update: Ian Murray, the only Scottish Labour MP was one of these that nominated Corbyn at the last-minute, having not backed any candidate up to now. Perhaps he is determined not be easily out-manoeuvred by the SNP.
Of course any nationalist or former Labour voter who wants Jeremy Corbyn as the party leader need only pay £3 and join in the process...
Is the old telephone number for Scotland Yard and just about the right handle for the Westminster Editor of the Scottish Daily Record. I mostly patrol Westminster but this is my personal blog, taking in everything from my native Isle of Lewis to the Isle of Dogs in London. You can read my journalism at www.dailyrecord.co.uk and you can contact me directly on torcuil@gmail dot com