I see your disappointed little face, like a bigger boy just stole your briefcase full of magical beasts and ran away with it. It was a noble effort, wasn’t it? A nice attempt to inject a little reality into the pompous caucus but now’s not the time for rationality. Now’s the time for yet more chest-beating and hollow rhetoric. What a shame your chest is made of damp little sticks and can take less of a beating than a climate protester at a black-tie dinner.

How peculiar it is that we’re throwing up our hands at the thought of what we could have won, Rory Stewart. You were our speedboat, our last thin hope of a shred of pragmatism for our future, a mild-mannered voice of reason despite being Conservative through and through. You’re the proud owner of a voting record of killing the poor with just enough support for gay rights thrown in to make you a laughable silhouette of a man of the people and that’s just about the best we could have hoped for.

Now it’s all gone tits up and we’re left with our final two, the turd finally sharpened into a double-ender with two differing but equally offensive points. Jeremy Hunt is bound to get obliterated, his previous Remain position rendering him completely untenable in the eyes of a positively frothing Conservative base who are quite willing to admit they’d rather rub the entire country’s gonads against a cheese grater if it meant seeing Brexit through to the bitterest of ends.

That whole ‘Conservative and Unionist party’ thing seems to be a bygone mirage, replaced instead by a tiny coterie of suicidal psychopaths who would happily see England and Wales go it alone if it meant pissing off a few Belgians. Boris is now inevitable, his entire approach summarised by the weekend’s news cycle. He’s a man who makes a giant mess and then sits on his laptop looking at bazungas, leaving the rest of us screaming with frustration and footing the responsibility for cleaning it up.

You were the only one, Rory Stewart. The only one honest enough to point out that a no-deal Brexit would be the largest red wine spill going, about as far from a ‘clean break’ as is imaginable, leaving whoever dealing with it still trapped in a never-ending set of negotiations and renegotiations. It’s pure fantasy to believe otherwise and sheer fucking idiocy to believe Johnson gives a flying toss about any of it. He’s just arrogant enough to believe his own hype, still flying high as a kite off the back of a ComRes poll that suggests he’d hammer Corbyn at the polls. The only question remaining is if he’s truly confident enough to put it to the test in a general election, risking opening the doors for Farage and his cabal of eminently unqualified wingnuts.

This whole circus promises the world and has nothing to actually offer. The Conservative margin is shrinking by the day, the likelihood of getting anything through Parliament without bipartisan support about as great as the odds of Mark Field winning Feminist of the Year. We’re fucked, grabbed by the neck and slammed against a pillar, our last sane voice drowned out and belonging to Rory fucking Stewart, a man who looks like a sex doll of Willem Dafoe made out of Babybel wax and pipe cleaners.

You’ve lost the battle but the war rages on, Rory Stewart. It’s time to mobilise the forces, assembling the masses, capitalising on your oddly awkward appeal to enthuse a new generation of voters and inspire a Momentum of your own. It’s too late for this leadership campaign but the future can still be bright and blue, dragging the inevitable carcass Boris makes of the party back to the centre to start again.

I see you, Rory Stewart, swaggering down the street with your army in tow. I see the dinner jackets and the tousled hair and I hear the chortling in the air, a hee-haw of posh donkeys clopping along in their dozens. I see them bend down to the homeless in the streets, burning fifty pound notes in their faces and laughing before they trot past. It’s a public service, Rory Stewart, reminding them that they’re responsible for their own ills and all they need to do is pull themselves up by the bootstraps on the boots they can’t afford and work hard to make a life for themselves.

I see you marching onwards, the New Tories in all your toff glory, smiling and waving as you saunter past the shuttered police stations and understaffed hospitals. I see the two men heading towards you, their hands linked, pausing nervously as you approach.

I see you raise your hand, Rory Stewart, pausing the throng behind you. I see their eyes lock with the men, the air thick with tension. I feel the awkward pause before you face bursts into a grin and you lunge forward to shake the couple’s hands. I feel the disappointment in the hearts of a few of those behind you but you don’t do that sort of rotten thing any more. It’s a handshake and a cheerful saunter on for the gays these days.

You’ve always enjoyed a nice long walk, Rory Stewart. And now it’s time for the longest one yet, the march back to centrist Conservatism. Time to put all this bothersome Brexit nonsense behind you, to get back to what it should really be about.

It’s time to get back to really fucking the poor, isn’t it? Fucking them good and proper, with a smile on your face and your tie undone, like the man of the people you really are.

I see you, Rory Stewart. I fucking see you.

I See You

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