There has been a phoney war going on in the Labour party for a few months now.
Jeremy Corbyn repeatedly stresses that he has no hidden agenda when it comes to the deselection of MPs on the right of the party.
To put it bluntly, no-one on the right of the party believes him for a minute.
Leopards do not change their spots, goes the theory, and the hard left is as obsessed about sectarianism and party control as it ever was.
Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell attended a meeting of the Momentum group last month where the deselection of Chuka Umunna was openly discussed.
Meanwhile, the clumsy briefing about a New Year shadow cabinet reshuffle, with the demotion or sacking of Corbyn’s critics, notably the widely-liked and respected Hilary Benn, has done little to assuage centrists that the leadership isn’t coming after them.
An act of magnanimity towards Danczuk, one of his most vocal foes, would be a visible manifestation that Corbyn actually means what he says about tolerating differences of opinion.
Needless to say, though, some leadership acolytes can’t disguise their jubilation at Danczuk’s predicament. Enter Ken Livingstone:
“I just find it so bizarre because he [Danczuk] put himself at the centre of the investigation into sex abuse of young girls and so on in his area, to have fallen into this, I find it hard to believe. I can’t say too much because I’m on Labour’s NEC and might have to take the final decision about whether he’s allowed to resume his party membership or whether we expel him.
“I don’t see how you can be sexually attracted to somebody that young, there’s something really disturbing [about it].”
Is he acting as an outrider for Corbyn? If so, the leadership should be careful about prurience being the reason for sacking one of their MPs.
Having threatened to stand against Corbyn as a stalking horse in the event of poor elections results in May’s Scottish, Welsh, London and local elections, Danczuk now finds himself at the mercy of his leader.
The smart move by Corbyn would be to admonish him for his recklessness and quietly drop the suspension and readmit him. He has broken no law and if sending a few racy tweets to a fellow consenting adult is now a capital offence in Labour politics, there will be plenty more MPs following Danczuk out of the exit door.