Feeds

Ex-Sun chief to fight Davis in '42 days' by-election

Gordon Brown ate my civil liberties

Security for virtualized datacentres

Errant Tory MP David Davis’ campaign to force a debate on civil liberties in the UK looked in danger of descending into a tabloid farce this morning as it emerged that his only serious opposition was the former editor of The Sun.

The LibDems have already said they will not fight the by election in Haltemprice and Howden, while Labour seems to be weighing up whether it would be more pathetic for the party to fight the election and lose or just not fight at all.

So it fell to Kelvin MacKenzie to do the rounds of the morning news shows today pointing out that Davis was actually swimming against the national tide on the issue, as a majority of voters apparently support the 42 day legislation.

MacKenzie told Radio 4 that he would stand against Davis, assuming Rupert Murdoch backs him up.

"The Sun is very, very hostile to David Davis because of his 28-day stand,” MacKenzie said. “And The Sun has always been up for 42 days, or perhaps even 420 days, frankly ... secondly this is a bizarre cost to the taxpayer."

'Slow strangulation' leads to tabloid fisticuffs

Davis surprised Westminster by resigning his seat yesterday, forcing a by-election which he hopes will turn into a debate on the Labour government’s “slow strangulation of fundamental British freedoms”.

As shadow home secretary Davis has consistently opposed Labour initiatives such as ID cards, the National ID database and detention for 42 days. His departure – which presumably he hopes will be temporary – came the day after the Labour government barely won the vote on its bill increasing the time terrorist suspects can be held without charge to 42 days.

However, as of this morning, it seemed Davis might not get quite the high-flown debate he obviously craves.

Assuming Murdoch does stump up, Kelvin MacKenzie should have a pretty clear run at Davis – the usual monster raving loons and UKIPs are unlikely to provide much of a challenge to the man behind headlines like “Gotcha”, “Up Yours Delors” and “Freddie Starr ate my Hamster”.

The LibDems have already said they will not fight the election.

Labour too may well demur. It has already condemned Davis' move as a vanity project – something which some Tories are also doing on the quiet apparently.

Officially, Harriet Harman, Labour's Deputy Leader and Party Chair, condemned the by-election saying it “is irresponsible to be calling a by-election when it is unnecessary. What this is really about is the conflicts and divisions within the Conservative Party on the important issues of terrorism and national security.”

Of course, Labour is also wary of turning in another embarrassing by-election performance after its shoddy showing at Crewe and Nantwich. Davis' constituency is a relatively safe Tory seat, making the prospect of the election becoming a real debate at best debatable.

By spinning Davis’ move as being more about “divisions within the Conservative Party on ... terrorism” Downing St gets to slither away from the highlighting of its own principles or its own dismal standing. ®

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
JINGS! Microsoft Bing called Scots indyref RIGHT!
Redmond sporran metrics get one in the ten ring
Driving with an Apple Watch could land you with a £100 FINE
Bad news for tech-addicted fanbois behind the wheel
Murdoch to Europe: Inflict MORE PAIN on Google, please
'Platform for piracy' must be punished, or it'll kill us in FIVE YEARS
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Sony says year's losses will be FOUR TIMES DEEPER than thought
Losses of more than $2 BILLION loom over troubled Japanese corp
Radio hams can encrypt, in emergencies, says Ofcom
Consultation promises new spectrum and hints at relaxed licence conditions
Why Oracle CEO Larry Ellison had to go ... Except he hasn't
Silicon Valley's veteran seadog in piratical Putin impression
Big Content Australia just blew a big hole in its credibility
AHEDA's research on average content prices did not expose methodology, so appears less than rigourous
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.