This is taken from Hansard 26/04/2006 - Column 582, oral answers to the house by Home Secretary Charles Clarke.
"Stephen Pound (Ealing, North) (Lab): No one would deny that this is a damnably serious business. I pay tribute to Members such as the hon. Member for Gainsborough (Mr. Leigh) who decided not to lower themselves by playing party politics with the issue. May I tell my right hon. Friend that the episode has taught me two things? First, this is not the time for the Home Secretary to leave his position, as he has to see this through. Secondly, does he not agree that the case for identity cards has now been made? "
Now let me respond to this as tactfully as I can:
I would like the honourable gentleman to explain to me just how ID cards would have prevented the release and subsequent non-deportation of 1,023 prisoners. How?
- If they don't know who they've released and where they are now then how would them having an ID card have changed this? Unless of course there are in built ways of tracking someone who has an ID card in which case it's a lot more sinister than I originally thought.
- As far as I see at the moment foreign nationals are not required to have ID cards so if we had the proposed draconian affront to civil liberites it wouldn't have made a blind bit of difference as they wouldn't have had them.
- ID Cards wouldn't have stopped the 7/7 bombings
- ID Cards wouldn't have stopped the home office screwing up 1,023 deportations
- ID Cards won't protect us from suicide bombers unless they are 7' tall and made of kevlar
- ID Cards won't combat identity fraud they will make it easier
UPDATE: Stephen Pound has just been on the Jeremy Vine Show saying that nothing is wrong. Laugh? I'm nearly bleeding. He must be having fun on Planet Hewitt