Last week we yet again saw the government fall into disarray over their attempts to get the Rwanda Bill through the Commons.
Make no mistake, this Bill doesn’t stop the boats, doesn’t save lives, and doesn’t deliver value for British taxpayers, it simply does not work.
Yet the Tories are fighting like cats in a sack over a piece of legislation that quite frankly isn’t worth the paper it is written on.
The issue of small boat crossings is not one that we can leave to the internal whims of the Conservative Party, people’s lives are at stake.
More families are grieving while dangerous criminal smuggler gangs are making huge profits from these perilous boat crossings whenever the weather calms.
Yet we see regurgitated plans from the Tories almost daily, with every new suggestion being even more farcical than the last.
More Home Secretaries than asylum seekers have been sent to Rwanda – and even if they do get it off the ground it will only cover less than 1% of people arriving in the country or people in asylum hotels, making it astronomically expensive.
Ministers have already sent £290 million to Rwanda with nearly £400 million promised, and have promised Rwanda extra payments for every individual asylum seeker sent, but they have refused to say how much that will cost the British taxpayer.
Now we learn that even Rishi Sunak thought the scheme wasn’t worth the money.
Leaked documents suggest he was concerned about the costs before it was signed off, wanted to limit the numbers sent to Rwanda, backed the use of hotels, and – damningly – said the “deterrent won’t work”.
The fact he’s begun writing cheques since becoming PM shows how weak he is.
Unlike the utter chaos this bill has plunged the Tories into, Labour has a clear plan.
The next Labour government will crackdown on criminal smuggler gangs, through new Cross-Border Police Unit and deeper security cooperation with Europe.
We will end hotel use, clear the Tory asylum backlog, and speed up returns to safe countries, saving the British taxpayer billions of pounds.
Crucially, we will work with international partners to tackle humanitarian crises at source, helping refugees in their own region.
It’s a serious plan that will save lives and stop the boats.
Rather than being obsessed with themselves, the Tories should bin the gimmick, and come up with a proper plan of their own.