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Iain Dale presents the evening show on LBC Radio and is a commentator for CNN.

Today is the day Theresa May officially resigns as Leader of the Conservative Party. She will, of course, remain as Prime Minister for another 55 days, until the new leader is unveiled on July 22. It will be an uncomfortable few weeks her, as she seeks to come to terms with the fate that has befallen her.

But she has 55 days to do a few things which could form part of her legacy. Her premiership will, of course, be defined by the failure to deliver Brexit, but she is still in control of the levers of power, and she could use them to affect people’s lives, even if only in a small way.

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It won’t just be the Prime Minister who leaves Downing Street in late July. No one ever thinks of the dozens of prime ministerial staffers who will all lose their jobs too.

One or two may be retained by the new regime, but most won’t. They’ll all get a few months salary by way of recompense, but after working in Number Ten, I do wonder how easy it is to go back to civvy street into a more normal job. Does Craig Oliver get the same buzz from the world of PR that he got in Downing Street? I doubt it.

Many will no doubt tread the well-trodden path into lobbying and public affairs. I’d urge them to think very carefully before doing that. It’s the easy way out. Yes, it’s financially rewarding, but what you’re effectively doing is pimping your contacts. Where’s the job satisfaction in that? There are plenty of other alternatives if you look hard enough.

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One of the notable things in this leadership campaign is the failure of any of the leadership candidates to come up with many eye-catching, game-changing policies.

Perhaps they need to take a leaf out of the book of the Alabama State Legislature, which this week passed a law which means that all convicted paedophiles will be chemically castrated.

At first sight, you think, wow, what a totally inhumane thing to do. But when you actually look into it, it makes total sense. A chemical castration is perhaps the wrong phrase to describe the procedure. Essentially, you get a three monthly injection of a chemical which reduces your sex drive to almost zero.

I imagine there are many self-hating paedophiles who would voluntarily submit themselves to this, in order to prevent them from committing an offence in the first place.

When I did a phone-in on this on Tuesday, I was shocked to learn that charities who provide emotional and therapeutic support to paedophiles get financial support from the taxpayer, but charities who provide support for the victims of paedophiles get nothing, and have to rely on voluntary contributions.

They are so badly off financially that they have to often turn people away, who are desperate for help. This is a prime example of the system not working for those who really need it. So, for any Conservative leadership candidate reading this, store it away, and if you win, pledge to do something about it.

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You’d have to have a heart of stone not to feel for all those people who dutifully followed the 11 Independent Group MPs of their respective parties. Tens of thousands of people abandoned their lifelong tribal loyalties, and put their trust in those MPs to form an exciting and fresh new political party.

Boy, how they’ve been let down. Now that six of that original 11 have abandoned Change UK to go back to being independent, there is no hope of it being able to continue as any kind of meaningful political force.

Anna Soubry now leads the rump of five MPs, but she’s the only one with any name recognition. Meanwhile, it is only a matter of time before most, if not all, of the six others join the Liberal Democrats.

This might an interesting move for Chuka Umunna, who is on record as declaring in recent months: “I am not a Liberal Democrat.” He forgot to add the word ‘yet’.

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On Wednesday night, I conducted the first of my Conservative leadership candidate interviews, with Mark Harper.

The series continues on LBC on Monday with Rory Stewart (8pm) and Sam Gyimah (9pm), followed by Andrea Leadsom and Esther McVey on Tuesday and Sajid Javid on Wednesday.

If you can’t listen live, our esteemed Editor will be posting the Youtube videos of each interview on ConservativeHome the next day [see above], or you can download them for your delight and delectation on the Cross Question podcast feed. End of advert.

72 comments for: Iain Dale: The tragi-comedy of the collapse of Change UK

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