Tuesday, 15 March 2016

Labour guarantee the Tories a free ride on Snooper's Charter

Tonight the Labour Party gave the Conservatives a free ride on the Investigatory Powers Bill, otherwise known as the Snooper's Charter. Together with the SNP, they sat on their hands and abstained when it came to the vote, thus guaranteeing another erosion of our civil liberties.

So if anyone thought that Labour might have changed under Jeremy Corbyn's leadership, they haven't. They are still the party that tried to force through ID cards.

What makes it worse is that the Tories were down by 49 MPs today. Had Labour and the SNP voted against the Bill then the government would have been forced to go away and think again.

During the last parliament, the Conservatives wanted to bring forward this affront to civil liberties but were forced to back down by the Lib Dems in the coalition. Yet another example of what the Lib Dems managed to achieve in government.

Here's former Director of Public Prosecutions (and now Labour MP) Keir Starmer writing in the Guardian that the Bill is not fit for purpose.

He abstained.

And here is SNP MP Joanna Cherry arguing that the Bill would set a bad example to the world.

She abstained too.

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