Alright, so Gerald Butts is back. Now what? To recap: Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s longtime friend and former principal secretary left the Prime Minister’s Office in mid February, resigning in disgrace or in valour (depending on what side of the aisle you’re on) amid the SNC-Lavalin scandal. Mr. Butts had been fingered by the former justice minister and attorney general, Jody Wilson-Raybould, as being one of the members of the prime minister’s inner circle who she said engaged in “consistent and sustained” pressure to abandon prosecution of SNC-Lavalin, despite her repeated attempts to put a halt to those appeals. Mr. Butts’ resignation came barely 10 days after The Globe and Mail first broke the story on Feb. 7, 2019, about allegations of political interference in the Quebec company’s legal affairs. He maintained his innocence, but said stepping away from his job as the prime minister’s chief adviser would be in the best interests of the Prime Minister's Office. As the CBC first reported on July 20, Mr. Butts—who said he takes “full responsibility” for the “breakdown” of trust between the prime minister and his former attorney general—will be back to play a role in this fall’s election on the Liberal team. This, despite Mr. Butts saying months ago that he was mostly done with the political life. And this, despite it going against most common sense that bringing Mr. Butts back into the fold would inevitably do what it has already done—open up a line of attack from the Conservatives that draws the whole SNC-Lavalin mess back into the headlines. But, as the mangled axiom goes, common sense is rarely common—especially when it comes to politics. Andrew MacDougall, former spokesperson for Stephen Harper, may have laid it out the best in his July 22 Maclean’s column, in which he said that tossing barbs at the Liberals for welcoming Mr. Butts back into the fold will only go so far. In fact, Liberals were quickly trying to turn the mirror right back on the Conservatives’ war room, papering social media with the 2017 report that former Rebel Media director Hamish Marshall was leading the Tory campaign. (Hey, isn’t posting old news stories one of those insidious ways of spreading disinformation that the Liberals are saying we should be on the lookout for during the election?) Despite the fire and brimstone Conservative MP Pierre Poilievre delivered at a July 22 press conference in Ottawa about Mr. Butts being a big phony, “Going on about Butts’ return isn’t a program for government, nor is it a plan for a brighter future. The Conservatives will need to focus elsewhere,” Mr. MacDougall wrote. By bringing Mr. Butts back, the Liberals have demonstrated that—rightly or wrongly—they’ve moved on. And it’s a gamble to depend on the fickle Canadian electorate still giving a damn.