ID Cards - Lords Climbdown

In the Lords, the climbdown on ID cards was quite noticeable. I think they've climbed down primarily because of the new talk from Tony and Friends about reforming the second chamber.

It could be that they could see the parliament act being used, and judge that this is the best they could get

In the division we see the following breakdown.

Party Contents Not-Contents Turnout
Bishop 3 1 15.4%
Con 128 0 59.8%
Lab 1 157 (+2 tell) 73.4%
LDem 58 (+1 tell) 0 78.7%
None 0 2 40.0%
Other 2 1 30.0%
Cross-bench 25 (+1 tell) 28 28.9%
Total: 217 189 55.8%

What I find interesting here is that Labour voted 'No', but the Tories and LibDems voted 'Yes', this is in contrast to the commons!

It seems to imply that the Labour Lords wanted the parliament act to be used so that the commons could force through the harsher measures, but that once the Lords had relented in this detail, the commons MPs didn't have the stomach for another round of pingpong.

I'll repeat here my assertion that this compromise is not much of a compromise given that the database is still there. I'm also amazed at how little coverage there is of this today, it doesn't seem to have been mentioned in the 'Today' programme this morning, and one has to search hard on for it

The Bishop of Winchester, who graciously replied to my letter, was absent

Paddy Ashdown voted 'content', and Baroness Amos voted 'not content'

Over on 'Not Little England' we see this, a huge quote, I know - I hope that's okay!

So, how long before I need to renew my passport then?

The Lord have caved in with a compromise that makes it worse, not better. You'll still be stamped and categorised, they'll still put your data on a centralised "secure" register, but you can have the sop of believing that you don't need a card.

Central pledge required from all candidates at the next General Election:

I will vote to abolish the National Identity Register

If they don't sign up to it, campaign against them. Regardless of party affiliation. I refuse to be 'registered'.

I hope that people who sign the pledge here, also oppose the Legislative and Regulatory Reform Bill, or I have a dilemma! In practice, my choice in this seat is Lib Dem or Tory.

Continuing with the quote from 'Not Little England':

  • Henry Porter at Comment is Free: The failure to register will be punished by a maximum fine of £2,500. The failure to apply in a manner prescribed (whatever that means) to renew your ID, or to inform the national identity register of a change of your details, or to surrender the ID card, or to notify the register of an invalid card, will all incur a maximum fine of £1,000.

Read that through again. £2,500 fine if you forget to tell them you've changed your details?

£2,500 fine?

As someone who perpetually forgets to file paperwork, whose drivers licence is still the one I was first issued 13 years ago registered at my parents address (perfectly legally I add), this scares the shit out of me. Why do they need a £2,500 fine for what they're selling as an 'entitlement' card?

  • Nosemonkey: The Lords have fallen for it. After a heroic, drawn-out defence they've been conned into believing it's the cards, rather than the database that backs up the cards, that's the problem.
  • Bookdrunk on Burnham: To describe any part of the ID card mess as 'absolutely clear' is either laughably delusional or grossly dishonest. The problem with Burnham is that it's hard to decide which applies.
  • And again: More able to control access to my identity? What is this rubbish? How does an identity database protect my fingerprints, date of birth, iris pattern etc. etc. from being stolen? Doesn't it store all of those things in one handy central place? How does this stop my credit card or name being used? Answer: it doesn't and it won't.
  • Spyblog: Most Conservatives abstained, but 24 of them including their Home Affairs front bench spokesmen David Davis, Edward Garnier and Patrick Mercer voted with the Labour Government. Only 8 Conservatives voted against the motion with the Liberal Democrats - It seems that David Cameron's NuTories cannot be trusted on civil liberties issues any more than Michael Howard's Tories could be.
  • Porter (again): People are beginning to see that ID cards are not being introduced so that they can identify themselves but rather so that the government can identify them and keep track of every important transaction in their lives.

We have to get them out of office.

They're a corrupt bunch of liars as well

See also: Last night's post and the commons vote. There's also the full parliamentary pingpong