Tuesday, April 05, 2005

UK ID cards bill probably lost

Britain's Prime Minister Tony Blair today called a general election in the UK for 5 May. This means that the UK Parliament will be dissolved next Monday. As a consequence, all bills that have not been passed by then will be lost. As the BBC reports, this will likely include the contested ID cards bill (about which more in this blog here and here).

Against that bill, the House of Lords had serious reservations. As the Earl of Erroll (a cross bencher) put it in the second reading of the bill two weeks ago:
“In conclusion, an ID card is basically an internal passport. It gives the authorities huge power to control our future movements and other things. It will irretrievably alter the balance between the citizen and the state. Millions have died defending our freedoms. Just because we are frightened of some terrorist attacks, we should not throw away those freedoms lightly.”
You can find that quote and the text of the Lords' deliberations here.

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