Saturday, 29 November 2008

Damian Green - what happens next?

I appreciate why people are calling for questions to be answered about the Damian Green affair, but I'm not sure how it can be taken forward. As I understand it, he's due to answer bail again in February, so it would be difficult to discuss it in any meaningful way without prejudicing a police investigation. I suppose questions could be asked about who authorised the arrest/ searches, and the way in which they were carried out, without looking at the substance behind the 'charges' (by which I don't mean charges, but the grounds for arrest, i.e. conspiracy to cause misconduct in public office). But we would need to know the seriousness of the allegations before knowing whether the police handling of it was disproportionate - although it certainly looks that way at the moment.

The other difficulty is that Parliament is prorogued at the moment. The Queen's Speech is on Wednesday, followed by five days of general debate on the Speech (interrupted by one day's debate on European Affairs on the 9th - why, I don't know). So we're on a one line whip till Thursday 11th and many MPs will choose to spend this time in their constituencies, or go on overseas trips, or take a holiday (not me, I hasten to add - I will be spending a bit more time in Bristol and making one or two speeches).

So I don't know whether it would be best to have a ministerial statement as soon as possible after the Queen's Speech or to wait until normal business is resumed. There is also the possibility the Speaker could make a statement. I expect that extraordinary circumstances may require an extraordinary response, and we might even get a statement next Wednesday, but that's mere speculation on my part.

26 comments:

Old Holborn said...

Well, the civil servant has been dragged off by the Home Office and nobody knows where he is (let's hope he doesn't get Kelly'ed eh?)

In the meantime, Commander Milburn has decided to put all the Common Purpose/ Fabian graduates together in something called a Civilian Security Force to keep an eye on us uppity Proles.

Have another read of 1984 Kerry. You are part of it.

Old Holborn said...

PS Kerry

Word round the campfire is that the civil servant knew something HUGE, hence 20 Terrorist plod (some armed) being sent to "restrain" a 52 year old MP, his Email frozen, his computers seized, his house searched, the Houses of Commons office being ransacked and a civil servant vanishing into the loving arms of Jackboot Jacqui's death squads.

Have you ever seen "V for Vendetta"?

Kerry said...

Can I just say that despite ticking very many of the Common Purpose boxes - Fabian, lawyer, worked for Britain in Europe, Labour MP - I had never heard of them till people started mentioning them on here.

And the references to DG being '52 years old' and 'middle-aged' are a bit silly aren't they? He's hardly Walter Wolfgang.

Old Holborn said...

If you sat where we sat, would you be worried?

Old Holborn said...

PS, I don't call throwing an 80 odd year concentration camp survivor, fully paid up Labour member out of your conference and then arresting him on your new fangled "Anti Terrorist " laws, "silly" because he shouted "rubbish" at Jack Straw lies over WMD.

I call it a bastard OUTRAGE.

The Sunday papers are going to be very interesting tomorrow. The polls next week should have you brushing up your CV. Unless of course, you can convert a few more Somalis to UK voting citizens.

Billy Wallace said...

So we're on a one line whip till Thursday 11th and many MPs will choose to spend this time in their constituencies, or go on overseas trips, or take a holiday.

I wonder what Mr Green will be doing with his time?

and will the young civil servant be kept in a safe house like a hostage, away from his family and friends, maybe until Feb next year?

Old Holborn said...

Billy,

Kerry wanted him to be kept in solitary for THREE MONTHS.

Old Holborn said...

His name is Chris Galley and I have just reported him missing.

Tomorrow my QC will be on his case

Kerry said...

I didn't say what happened to Walter Wolfgang was silly - I said trying to portray Damian Green as a vulnerable '52 year old' was.

Trixy said...

He clearly is vulnerable because he's not in the government. It seems you have to be part of the New Labour machine to be safe.

Why a debate on the 9th for EU affairs? Why only one day should be the question, seeing as you're debating legislation and they make over 75% of it. (Yes, they do. The 9% figure is regulations only).

Old Holborn said...

The Sunday Times are holding the front page.

More later

Kerry said...

We spent nearly a whole month debating Europe in Parliament this year.

Old Holborn said...

Kerry said

"blah blah blah"

Kerry said...

No, that was David Heathcote-Amory.

Michael said...

"We spent nearly a whole month debating Europe in Parliament this year."

What, and still thought it was a good idea? God you're more stupid than I first thought...

Remember Remember said...

Hey Kerry, tell us more about this "Civilian Security Force" your party are planning. Will they have powers to arrest opposition politicians as well as ordinary dissenters?

Kerry said...

See my response to SAOT on the other post - it's Progress, not the Govt. Just ideas being floated, about which I know nothing. Try their website. Or Alan Milburn.

Remember Remember said...

I would have thought such "ideas" were more likely to have been spawned by the BNP...

Btw Kerry:
Are you more loyal to the People or the Party?

Pat Nurse said...

I was very disturbed to hear Harriet (give me the job because I'm a woman)Harman spouting about a review of how police have access to MPs offices and the palace of Westminster.

I worry about yet another immature knee-jerk reaction by Govt to something awful that's happened which could ultimately make things worse and create yet further opportunities for abuse of power.

We don't need a review of this situation. We need police to be able to search MPs offices etc if they suspect they have done wrong. We DON'T need jackboot tactics against an opposition MP or anyone else who is trying to uncover information that is in the public interest.

Please Kerry, tell Harman to stop meddling. It's felt like NuLab have been like a pack of children in Govt twiddling with the knobs of the system to the point that it's now so messed up no-one feels safe anymore and we are all confused between the basic rights and wrongs.

We are not safe from the police (and if you want a personal horror story, Kerry, please get in touch) we are not safe from Govt - which is certainly excluding smokers out of society and criminalising it's citizens in all sorts of other ways, while using very heavy-handed methods to crush opposition irritation.

Furthermore, we are not safe from our own children because NuLab have invested so much power in today's youth it is, I believe, the reason why it is out of control and so dangerous.

If all that is currently bad isn't down to NuLab, then why have I, and other people I know, felt steadily more oppressed and frightened as the last 11 years have progressed.

Kerry said...

So you're not happy when the police exercise their powers and you're not happy when someone says the situation should be reviewed so that it can't happen again?

Remember Remember said...

Don't forget to answer the question: "Are you more loyal to the people or the Party"?

Pat Nurse said...

It's not that I'm unhappy that police exercise powers of arrest but how they use them to intimidate innocent people for the kind of result they want.

If an MP has broken the law he or she should be subject to police searches and investigations and they shouldn't be allowed to hide behind parlt.

The problem is that many of our dear old boys in blue these days act like thugs, bullies and cowards and now that Govt has given them more power, you can't expect them not to come banging on Parlt's door with it.

If the Govt is looking at reviewing how police gain access to MPs offices, then it should look at how they work in general when dealing with the rest of us plebs (and I'm not talking about extraordinary crims with guns, bombs, knives etc....)

Police are currently entering ordinary people's homes in the same jackboot manner as the MP experienced, leaving them shocked and traumatised - often uneccessarily and often when children are present. Any innocent person who has had this happen is left traumatised with no real and impartial avenue for complaint (and don't mention the useless IPCC).

I worry about the possible review because, quite frankly,I don't trust Labour politicians not to make things much worse and I trust Ms Harman even less. I just think your party has been meddling far too much already with things that it should have left alone for the greater good of the country.

Trixy said...

Kerry: You spent less than a month debating a Treaty where your party lied.

I am actually quite good at maths, having the benefit of being taught at a good school when the Tories were in power, and know that 1/12 is not 75%.

Remember Remember said...

LOL, I think she's to busy bailing out a sinking ship to answer her Blog.

timbone said...

Kerry, I found a link to a press release on the Guardian.co.uk The article was about Damian Green. I know the press release link is a different subject, but it was referred to because it is another case of something which a government does not want to make public. Please will you have a look. Thank you.

http://www.pr-inside.com/serious-questions-need-answering-in-r941760.htm

Kerry said...

Nice try.