Thursday, September 15, 2005

I concede that Clarke is a shrewd politician

Charles Clarke has just outlined the Home Office's proposals for new anti-terror legislation.

You may remember that, last year, there was cross-party consensus for introducing a number of new offences. The consensus was for "creating offences of preparing, training for and inciting terror acts".

The new proposals include those three offenses, but they also include a number of others, including extending the limit for detention without trial from two weeks to three months.

The opposition parties, such as the Liberal Democrats, are unhappy with these plans and may well attempt to block them in their current form or attempt to modify them back to the agreed proposals.

Charles Clarke can then claim that they are renaging on their promises from before the summer recess and score political points. In between the political battles he may well get his way, unless we are forceful in our condemnation of pushing through unpopular and controversial proposals on the back of common ground.

Let's be clear: The argument between the parties has been caused by the modification of the original proposals.


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