I will stick to my determined and stubborn policy of not discussing the pros and cons of abortion while the matter is not a real issue of choice for voters here. I will likely not go into the merits of the issue even if it were to become a real political question, at least until I grow a womb and acquire the right to tell women what they should be doing.

I am not scandalised by the Nationalist Party’s war drums about abortion. Perhaps a little bit annoyed at the superficial distraction from the real issues facing the country and for the weakening of the sound arguments for which some of the candidates being presented by the PN ought to be voted for by the electorate. But not scandalised.

A political party in the predicament of the PN wants to galvanise its core support and it’s not beneath its dignity, when all else fails, to guilt its traditional, but perhaps tepid, voters into supporting it.

But looking at that headline of Adrian Delia’s speech today suggests the man is starting to believe his own crap.

I have no admiration for political cynicism. But if Adrian Delia was being cynical in drumming up the abortion case, I’d have somehow understood his reasons for giving ambivalent voters a cause to back him in.

But I’m starting to think he’s not cynical at all. He’s looking like he’s starting to think it is somehow important for his party to gain a PN majority in the EP elections because failing that would somehow bring about the external imposition of abortion on Malta.

This feels like a time-warp but here we go again. Even if this sounds like a patronising conversation from 2002, please understand no majority in the European Parliament – Socialist or otherwise – has the legal means of introducing abortion in Malta unless Malta’s Parliament is willing and happy to legislate for it itself.

The PN patiently explained this to fearful voters ahead of the 2003 referendum, securing even an explicit protocol to Malta’s treaty of accession to the EU that expressly rules out the introduction of abortion in Malta unless Malta thinks that’s what it wants to do.

Of course it may very well be possible for the Labour Party and its majority to decide it wants to introduce abortion, quite independently of what the European Socialists think of the matter.

But here’s the rub now. Adrian Delia has just helped Labour do that, if that is really what they wanted to do.

He has pinned the outcome of the European Parliamentary elections to an effective referendum on whether Malta should introduce abortion.

Whether he is addressing ambivalent voters or enthusiastic ones, Adrian Delia must be the only man alive who thinks that a PN majority in the upcoming EP elections floats anywhere in the realm of possibility. Everyone else is betting on the extent of the gap between Labour’s majority and the PN’s vote and it’s hard to come up on anyone expecting anything less than multiples of tens of thousands.

In effect therefore Adrian Delia has just dished in the most banal way the most grotesque disservice imaginable to the anti-abortion cause by handing Labour a mandate to introduce abortion on the back of a vote Adrian Delia himself described ante bellum to have been a referendum on the matter.

If you’re against abortion your knight in shining armour has just shown up with hormone-blocking tablets and an aspirator.

It’s one thing to fight useless battles. Another thing altogether to be useless at that.