Here we go…

Posted by Tim Ireland at November 9, 2005

Category: The War on Stupid

This entry was posted on
Wednesday, November 9th, 2005
4:39 pm and is filed
under The War on Stupid.

4:38pm – Heh. The Speaker made a funny. MPs are now voting. Back in 12-15 minutes. Blow-by-blow here if you’re bored.

4:48pm – Still waiting, but I’ve been meaning to blog this; I suspect that – as with Division 118 during the last election – how MPs vote here is going to be a candidate litmus test for a lot of people at the next election. This applies especially to emergency arm-twisters like Gordon Brown. As you make your bed…

4:56pm – 322 against… that’s a no… a BIG no! Blair defeated 322 votes to 291. 31 vote margin! 31 votes! Democracy rules!

4:58pm – I am now playing God Gave Rock & Roll To You at full blast. Go Commons, go Commons!!!!!

5:04pm – MPs will now vote for 28 days detention. A prediction: If this passes, the Blair Faithful will try to present this as Teh Big Win (hey, it *is* double). But Blair put his entire weight (and Gordon’s) behind 90 days … and it wasn’t enough. Blair’s finished. His survival prior to this relied heavily on a perception of invulnerability. No more. We have taken an important step toward a sensible and responsible approach to terrorism.

5:15pm – 28 days passes with 323 for and 290 against. I’m off down the pub before Hazel Blears shoves her face in front of a camera. See you in the morning. Late-ish.

UPDATE – I’ve left my pint behind to come back to base camp and say the following:

1. With the exception of two social events, from tomorrow I am officially on the wagon again for another 30 days (coincidentally, this adds up to 28 days). It’s not a tax-strike this time, but instead a special treat for my liver.

2. I have a message for Rebekah Wade: Sweetums, you’re probably going to go out for a few drinks tonight. Try not to lose your temper, there’s a dear.


  1. Talk Politics says

    As I write…

    According to the Beeb, the vote on the internment clause of the anti-terror bill should be due sometime between 4:15pm and 4:45pm – almost this very minute in fact.While we’re waiting, the Beeb has a blow-by-blow account of the debate itself.In…

  2. Talk Politics says

    Amendment 55 – 90 days detention

    Ayes – 291Nos – 32290 days voted down!!!!Tim’s clearly very happy – not sure I’d go as far as Kiss mind you but a 30 vote defeat for Blair on a 66 majority is, as the Norwegians might say, a hell of a beating.

  3. Talk Politics says

    Winnick’s amendment – 28 days

    Ayes – 323Nos – 29028 days it is.

  4. Wolf Solent says

    This looks suspiciously like the old Tory tactic of announcing something completely f*cking mental so that it looks entirely fine when merely unpleasant and unreasonable measures are subsequently introduced, though. As today’s Private Eye points out, 28 days is still a good deal more than anyone else allows.

  5. Manic says

    Totally agree on its excess… but that’s one hell of a gamble to make when you’re in Blair’s position, isn’t it?

  6. Scaryduck says

    *ring ring, ring ring*”Steve? It’s Ross. Yeah. Rebakah’s out tonight. Yeah. Again. With Blunkett. Yeah. Wanna come over?”What am I insinuating?

  7. Manic says

    Hahahahahahaha! And on *my* blog, too. You slaaaaaaaaaaaaaaag!

  8. goatchurch says

    It was awesome, but I think it’s a trap. The only risk he took was that PC Plod and his chums would be stupid enough to peddle his propaganda. As to what just happened in Parliament, it was a win-win gamble for him. By losing that vote he’s made himself terrorist-proof. When the next bomb blows up, he can say it’s nothing to do with Iraq, it’s all those woolly liberal Tories voting down these vital measures. His modus operandi all the way through is to have the gall to peddle lies to a gullible and misinformed public, and triumph from it.

  9. s7uar7 says

    Yes, I thought that too, but he’s only terrorist proof if any future bombers were arrested prior to the bombing and had to be released because the 28 days were up. If they either weren’t arrested, or they were arrested and released before 28 days, then he won’t be able to use it.

  10. Manic says

    The only flaw in that argument, s7uar7, is that it relies on logic and not faith (or fear).goatchruch:*That* said… Blair isn’t omnipotent, neither is he invulnerable… but Clarke’s backpedalling on Friday’s poll (make that ‘discussion-prompter’) clearly showed the strings.*But*… I was greatly disturbed when listening to the debates this afternoon. Far too many Conservatives hung their argument on the ‘how can I be an opportunist if public opinion is for it’ hook for me to be happy about it.Blair’s control of mainstream media was the problem in the lead-up to Iraq, and it remains a problem… but I still think he’s been weakened by this. Considerably. I would have loved to have been in the back-bars in Westminster this evening, when the ‘when’, not ‘if’ word was sure to be in play.

  11. goatchurch says

    I never thought he’s omnipotent. He’s just playing a game now, more than ever before, and is simply going erratically for broke, like a gambler going to ruin. He knows this is his last chance to play King of the World, because afterwards we will bury his corpse so deep it will be preserved for a thousand years. He is not going to leave Downing Street willingly, ever. It will take five guys with crow-bars to shift him and bring him out tied to a stretcher. The time has come for all these party members wake up to the fact that it’s no longer a game of waiting, that they have to actually stick their necks out and do something, or they will continue to be humiliated by this psychopath who is their leader.

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