David Davis: Man of Principle

David Davis has resigned from the commons to force a by-election in which he'll stand. He will fight the campaign based on his opposition to the 42 days detention without charge and the slow erosion of civil liberties seen under this government.

BBC Political Editor Nick Robinson said it was an extraordinary move which was almost without precedent in British politics.

True, it's an MP taking a stand on principle (cynical, moi?)

Labour MP Denis MacShane said he was sure Mr Davis would win the by-election but added "I think this will be seen as a stunt" which showed the Conservatives were "utterly unfit" for government.

Thus spake a man who is avoiding the argument on the issue.

In his resignation statement, he said he feared 42 days was just the beginning and next "we'll next see 56 days, 70 days, 90 days."

But, he added: "In truth, 42 days is just one - perhaps the most salient example - of the insidious, surreptitious and relentless erosion of fundamental British freedoms."

He listed the growth of the "database state," government "snooping" ID cards, the erosion of jury trials and other issues.

"This cannot go on. It must be stopped and for that reason today I feel it is incumbent on me to make a stand," said Mr Davis.

"At least my electorate and the nation as a whole will have had the opportunity to debate and consider one of the most fundamental issues of our day - the ever intrusive power of the state into our lives, the loss of privacy, the loss of freedom and the steady attrition undermining the rule of law," he said

Hear, Hear!

Good luck DD - I do hope that it's a landslide (and can't be argued that it's just the core vote of a safe seat).

This could only be more dramatic if it had been Cameron.

Update: The speech is online (it's a great speech).

Related:

  • Iain Dale
  • Labour@Home (who seem be arguing on the party lines, not the issue)
  • It might be a publicity stunt, hopisen, but it's one that we need with this nasty government.
  • e8voice (Davis has balls and they're in the air)