Lords again defeat ID cards Bill

THE House of Lords tonight inflicted a third defeat on the Government over its controversial plans to introduce identity cards, peers voting 218 to 183 to keep the scheme voluntary.

By Graham Dines

THE House of Lords tonight inflicted a third defeat on the Government over its controversial plans to introduce identity cards, peers voting 218 to 183 to keep the scheme voluntary.

Conservative and Liberal Democrat opponents of the Government's plans claim ministers are ignoring their own party manifesto and trying to introduce compulsion by stealth by forcing passport applicants to also get an ID card.

Tory Baroness Park of Monmouth said cards would “expose the innermost secrets of their (the publics') lives to identity theft, which is already growing and which will make them extremely vulnerable


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“The creation of such an enormous national identity register is going to be a present to terrorists. It will be a splendid thing for them to disrupt and blow up. It's also going to provide valuable information to organised crime and to the intelligence services of unfriendly countries”

The prospect that eventually the Government may have to use the Parliament Act to get the Bill into law sparked angry exchanges over the revising role of the Lords and the right of peers to challenge MPs when they think they have made a wrong decision.

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Liberal Democrat peers' leader Lord McNally protested: “It is very important in the relationship between the two Houses that this House retains the right to say `no.'

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