Most MPs should hang their heads in shame for yesterday's display of scorn for human rights, ignorance of their meaning and sheer zenophobia. Let them all from Jack Straw downwards (Can one go lower than Jack Straw ?) go and work for Murdoch and the gutter press. I honour the 26 who voted against the resolution including Alan Beith, Tom Brake, Lorely Burt, Don Foster, Duncan Hames, Simon Hughes, Julian Huppert, Tessa Munt, Alan Reid, Stephen Williams. I honour especially Tom Brake, Lorely Burt and Kate Green for their unpopular but principled speeches.
I ask Mike Hancock, John Pugh and Bob Russell who supported the motion what they think they are doing in a Liberal party ? I ask the majority of MPs especially amongst them my MP David Laws, our party leader Nick Clegg and many other Liberal Democrats why they could not even be bothered to attend or vote in this debate on a question which should be meat and drink to a Liberal. There is always room for argument on economic policies but if we can't get these questions right, we serve no purpose in the British political scene.
I suppose I should not be surprised by the stupidity and ignorance of the majority of MPs on this subject. Some still confuse the European Court of Human Rights with the EU, perhaps deliberately. There is nothing undemocratic about accepting its judgements any more than those of any other court. The court derives its power in the UK from a treaty voluntarily signed by the UK government and ratified by the UK parliament. This case is about honouring our commitments. If we wish to resile from the European Convention, there are procedures for doing so but it would be a great loss to our country and our freedoms. Removing the right to vote has no value in penal policy. It neither punishes nor deters nor rehabilitates.