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Blair bangs ID card drum

PM in biometric hard sell

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Tony Blair has once again seen fit to toss his prime ministerial two penneth into the ID cards debate.

In a piece for The Telegraph today, the PM goes on the hard sell. Eulogising biometrics, Blair wrote: "I believe its benefits go beyond helping us counter problems. Biometric technology will enable us, in a relatively short period of time, to cut delays, improve access and make secure a whole array of services."

"The case for ID cards is a case not about liberty but about the modern world. Biometrics give us the chance to have secure identity and the bulk of the ID cards' cost will have to be spent on the new biometric passports in any event."

He goes on to promise ID cards will cost no more than £30 on top of the £66 the biometric passport will cost, asserting it is "not a bad price for the problems I am convinced they will help us tackle."

"There is the argument that ID cards and the national register simply will not work. This rests largely on the past failures, which I accept exist, of IT projects of all governments. This, however, seems to me an argument not to drop the scheme but to ensure it is done well."

We'd like to think those words won't come back to haunt him...but we don't. ®

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