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Was it worth it?

In one big way that question has to be answered with a resounding no.

The Right is much weaker with the pro European Dominic Grieve as presumptive Home Secretary.

David Davis was our best hope in the shadow cabinet.

I cannot believe he will have the same influence from the back benches.

The other pollsters may have asked different questions, but I would say that the new question reflects peoples' thinking, and it was DD that changed it.

Before people weren't bothered about terrorists being banged up for a bunch of days but now they've been made to realise that it could be anyone being banged up for many weeks.

Yes, assuming he gets in, he should take that as a mandate to do an IDS, like you say - he can then poke holes in the argument of any unelected body (brown) without being hypocrytical.

Let's get this straight.

You question the ICM poll for leading their respondents?

How about asking 5000 thousand people their opinion, and 17 days later asking the same 5000 people to admit they got it wrong? Is that accurate - do you like to admit you were wrong? I don't.


No. It was a childish thing. It's always wise to fight within the system.

Yes, our liberties are always worth fighting for.

He should have stayed as Shadow Home Secretary and he would then have been in the perfect position to build the more liberal Britain he seeks.

One think that hasn't yet been mentioned but may prove significant is by resigning as Shadow Home Sec. it paves the way for William Hague to be Home Sec. should we win the next General Election. In fact I wouldn't be surprised if that move wasn't made in a re-shuffle prior to the next election.

Agree with you HF - but also agree with you bluepatriot! He should have fought from the inside.

Was it worth it?

NO - More taxpayers money wasted

Nuff Said

P.S I'm voting for the Mad Cow Woman (OMRLP)

I'd forgotten about the whole thing.

It was worth it to show up the despicable and craven surrender by The British people to apathy, spin, manipulation and their ever increasing poverty of involvement, responsibility and care for freedoms so hard fought for.
"An interview with a fallen battle soldier of any war ever fought. "Was it worth it?" "Yes, I died in MY belief in freedom and the honour of serving my country and my fellow man."
For once drop the arrogant and snob ridden intellectual crap and actually FEEL for what this man has done. Potentially sacrificed a glittering career and personal chance of snout in trough on a matter of principle.
As for politics home, it is a Westminster closet for passers by of a certain media and village people mentality so very much in the image of the cosy BBC and the like.
Heaven help us. How many of this useless bunch saw Crewe coming before anyone else.
Dear Lord preserve us and bring us many more freedom fighters in the DD mould because we sure as hell need them. Andrew Rawnsley, pah!

Yes, it was very much worth it.

Firstly it has brought the debate about civil liberties to the public concious.

But, maybe more importantly, it has highlighted that there are politicians who are there because they believe in something, and that careful triangulation is not the only way forward.

I also wonder whether the generally positive reaction to DD's stance helped give Cameron the confidence to deliver that Glasgow speech, which I think (hope) will lead to a sea change in how people see essential changes such as welfare reform.

From a political point of view it has also strongly demonstrated that there is a potential Conservative Home Secretary that understands the importance of civil liberties, and that could be a powerful weapon in Tory / Lib Dem marginals in the south.

In a word - "No"

Will we miss Davis? I think not because his misjudgement has revealed serious flaws which it would be preferable not to have in a cabinet minister

When he resigned I was quite worried fearing that there would be a huge split within the party that would ultimatey prove self defeating. That hasn't happened. DD has been largely successful in framing the debate and decisively winning it helped by supportive comments from within the security service itself. Brown on the other hand only just managed to hold the line by entering the murkiest of deals and alienating a substantial proportion of his own MPs. So whatever the result and turn out today DD has won. We should all be grateful to him.
Hopefully even if he does not return to the Shadow Cabinet he can do for Home Affairs what IDS has done in the welfare debate and become ahugely respected expert on the subject.

M Dowding: PoliticsHome run two polls, the '100' is of insiders and the '5000' is of voters at large. The survey referred to above is of voters at large.

"do you like to admit you were wrong?"

Steve Green's point is good.

David Davis is a man of principle and hopefully will win back his seat. He has sown the seeds for a revolt in the party in favour of real Conservatism and I wish him well in that. We need a party that is in tune with the public mood not another Blairite one that does not give a stuff, if politicians wish to end our liberties then they should leave this country and go to live in Zimbabwe or other such places.

As the conservatives (bar one) and Lib Dems voted against the government on this issue, I hope the conservatives will give DD 99% support in the weeks to come. This issue, as Gordon Brown will soon discover, is not dead an buried.

It just seems the wrong issue. If a big hitter from the shadow bench had done a kamikaze over Lisbon then the media would be in meltdown and the good people of the favoured constituency would be delivering their verdict upon the EU.

Instead we limp miserably through a field of glamour models and raving loonies who ceased to be funny in the 1970s.

Absolutely it was worth it - whatevever the size of the majority. It puts in the shade, all the other issues we debate endlessly. It is the only fundemental principle that really matters. This is difficult for the conventional political mind to grasp - focussed as it is on fudge, doublespeak and survival at any cost.

Although I usually find Bob Geldof irritating and 'holier than thou'his beautifully lucid in the Telegraph had me cheering !!

Of course it was worth it and come what may, David Davis has put himself into a higher league of political leadership.

The fact that his press conference was shown on all news was well worth it. His position has been reinforced by the recent statements by a former head of the security services. Being niggardly about the money it cost when faced with the onslaught against individual rights is just typical of the attitude of some in the current Conservative Party.

Lose the argument so go for the cost...how contemptible. In a time when the country is wasting billions on things like the Olympics spending £200k on something so important is vital.

No. As others have said: he should have stayed inside the tent.

Our liberties are always worth fighting for, but the biggest loss of these is to the EU. He has said no more about this than he did as shadow Home Secretary (i.e. nearly nothing).

A certain somebody is questioning your timing again boys!

It's That Man Again

No. As others have said: he should have stayed inside the tent.
That implies that there's a vacuum in the tent when he left, which I don't think there was. - A very labour attitude as shown when they don't resign saying "I broke it so I'll fix it".

I think this is just the beginning so asking 'was' it worth it seems a bit final and although he hasn't mentionned the EU, it has got people talking about it.
If he'd come out on an anti-EU policy he'd just look like he was UKIP or some nationalist, but now that civil liberties are in debate, it explains to people the tory line of "in europe, not run by europe"

The PHI5000 argument is essentially "Ignorance is Strength". I wouldn't be so quick to claim it as justification. Those who want to remove freedom and civil liberties with measures that it is clear the security forces *have not* asked for, need to keep the public ignorant of what the implications of their actions are.

David Davis has kept this issue in the public mind, and has helped to broaden understanding and debate, in an environment where it is hard to do either. Whatever the by-election result is he has served his country well.

"How about asking 5000 thousand people their opinion, and 17 days later asking the same 5000 people to admit they got it wrong?" - Steve Green

The PoliticsHome polling flaws are worse than that. According to the PoliticsHome website,
"The politically balanced panel of 5000 regular voters have been asked every working day whether they have positive or negative feelings towards David Davis."

Asked the same question every working day? No, of course this wouldn't affect their views...entirely representative.....

This is a pointless question that dwells on the past.

If any of you are serious about winning the next election keep your doubts to yourself, support the man and the party and look forward to what we can achieve rather than asking was it worth it. Use the mandate to attack the Labour party, use their unwillingness to stand and defend their position to attack them, do not criticise members of the conservative party.

now that civil liberties are in debate, it explains to people the tory line of "in europe, not run by europe"
Posted by: Norm Brainer | July 10, 2008 at 10:37

This hoary old 'policy' is as inexplicable as ever. The 2 halves of it are antithetical.

To be frank, No. The debate has been non-existent. Personally, I would have welcomed it as I happen to disagree with him on this particular issue.

The real sadness is that he has probably derpived the Shadow Cabinet of one of the very few remaining Conservatives.

Deborah,

Agreed. Donal Blaney also points out how skewed the question asked by PH was. Asking how long a terror suspect can be held (PH) is totally different to asking how long someone who could be innocent should be held (ICM).

now that civil liberties are in debate, it explains to people the tory line of "in europe, not run by europe"
Posted by: Norm Brainer | July 10, 2008 at 10:37

This hoary old 'policy' is as inexplicable as ever. Th 2 halves of it are antithetical.

You are asking the wrong question. Freedom is beyond price and David Davis seems quite prepared to pay a significant personal cost for pursuing the cause of freedom and civil liberties. He has also restored our faith in politicians as people of principle.

We all owe him a great debt and were I in his constituency, I would have been out on the stump for him.

The PH 5000 question is very disappointing. It is ludicrously biased. The PH 5000 is not a proper YouGov poll. ICM is a member of the British Polling Council and in the absence of any other data from a BPC source, it must be regarded as authoritative.

It is disappointing, as mentioned above, to see ConHome running this question on the day a Conservative is standing for Parliament. Negative slants on his move are the right of every commentator, but as a friend of the party it was, I think, a duty to publish only after close of poll, lest turnout be affected.

I do think David's move was not the right one. That said, I support him on the issue. As a candidate in a marginal I have not forgotten the torrid days of last summer, when we were behind in the polls and many activists were baying at David Cameron and his entire strategy. But the Shadow Cabinet was united at that time and David Davis' full-throated support was a big part of it. Discipline like that was key to our recovery. It would have made a difference in the seat I'm fighting.

He was an outstanding Shadow Home Secretary, seeing off various Labour occupants of the office, and he was a strong and loyal lieutenant. Simple courtesy and respect for his achievements ought, I think, to have precluded an article like this on polling day, especially predicated on a biased question non-poll like the PH 5000, when we have a real one from ICM that says the opposite.

I agree with Westminster Wolf @ 8.36, and I haven't fromed much of an opinion of Dominic Grieve!
But I also agree with Sally @ 9.14 and NormBrainer @ 10.37 AND very strongly with Stewart Geddes @ 11.26.

I do think that David Davis brought the whole issue of civil liberties to the public's attention in a way that could not have been done if he had stayed in office. Of course something is lost in that he actually had to resign his post in order to make the public (or at least more than before) more aware. But so-be-it, for the time-being!

Speaking of by-elections, do the Tories have a manifesto ready in case Labour lose Glasgow East, Brown gets kicked out and new leader calls election? Highly unlikely to happen but just in case...

I am really surprised that no one seems to have noticed/written about Haltemprice being the constituency of the new statesman, not sure if i should put surname into print!

I think this does relate to both this particular political campaign but also politics in general at the moment - voter apathy. Alan, just using his christian name, represented everything we hated about politicians. Yes, he was clearly a Tory, but he represented more than just the hatred for the Tories at the time, he represented the disdain for which MP's were and are held. This also relates to Cameron trying to clamp down on MEP's expenses, cash for peerages, questions over the Iraq war/dodgy dossier and the wider beleif that MP's are in it for themselves and we, as the voting public, are regularly lied to.

In the end though, I was just hoping for a comical piece based around the Alan character from one of the many political satirists out there; anyone know of one?

Whether resigning was the right thing or not we should acclaim a politician who is willing to put principle ahead of career and reputation. Goodness knows there are few enough of this ilk nowadays.

I saw DD speak at a function on Saturday. He went out of his way to speak at an event that was outside his constituency and would not have yielded a single vote. However, he spoke with passion and was very well received. It's clear that this issue matters a great deal to him and we should rejoice about that.

Was it worth it?

NO

I didn't realise the by election was today until a bloke in the pub mentioned it last night

What will be a good result for Davis? Not sure anyone really knows. Crewe & Nantwich was a really great result for us - does this result really matter and who really cares

If I lived there I would really be torn in who I would vote for ..... the blonde or brunette - think I would go for the blonde. I would be quite happy to be detained for 42 days or even longer with either of them.

Apologies for being flippant and facetious.

@Jimbo... I'm sure I used a b'stard reference in my comments within the past few weeks, but have also been suprised it's not been used more.
Had to look it up when I first heard DD's speech as I though it was a fictional consituency, which it was at the time.

Anyone predicting DD's majority tonight?

Jimbo - lighten up

The New Statesman was a comedy and should be viewed as that. Personally I found it funny as anyone with an ounce of humour would do so.

I have often wondered if his sidekick Piers was named after the former MP for Beckenham - there did seem to be some similarities.

In these times of political correctness Jimbo I don't think the title 'christian' name is any longer acceptable. Could I suggest that forename of first name is used in future please.

Louise Bagshawe may not like the PoliticsHome tracker but there is no other poll that we have to show whether DD's campaign has had an effect on public opinion. Not yet anyway; other polls may yet be published. As we say at the end of the post: the important thing from DD's perspective is that he keeps at it, as IDS has done on social justice. Martin Bell on Comment is free applauds DD for building a big tent of supporters for his cause. That may be his big achievement of the last three or so weeks.

"In these times of political correctness Jimbo I don't think the title 'christian' name is any longer acceptable. Could I suggest that forename of first name is used in future please. (Andrew Bradley) "

Is this guy for real !! Perhaps he shouldn't take the name of a Saint

I wish DD every success in seeking to raise public awareness of the relentless erosion of our civil liberties since 1997. In the debates which ensue let us hope that that DD supported by the whole Conservative party, will revisit the Civil Contingencies Act. Whilst superficially innocuous at first glance, the "small print" in Part 2 of this Act contains some of the most draconian provisions ever enacted in Britain, even during wartime.

To Rod Sellers

It was a joke!! as was surely obvious from previous comments. Probably not a very good one though.

I can also assure you that I am very real - one of a minority who use my own name.

"In these times of political correctness Jimbo I don't think the title 'christian' name is any longer acceptable. Could I suggest that forename of first name is used in future please."

As a non-Christian I certainly don't have a problem with people describing their first name as a "Christian name". Why do we have to go all "PC" suddenly?

Sorry... Just seen you were being ironic!!!

Here is the PH 5000's question:

"Do you support or oppose extending the period that terrorist suspects can be held without charge from 28 days to 42?"

I think the bias in the question speaks for itself. No judgement can be made from such a question. It prompts a certain response.

David Davis's very considerable achievements as Shadow Home Secretary deserve a better response than articles questioning him while the polls are still open. David Cameron and other shadow ministers went to campaign for him and you do not need to agree with his decision to resign (I don't) in order to give him that respect.

Although I don't agree with his method in this case I admire Mr. Davis for standing up for his principles and reinforcing the public view that we are the party of civil liberties - liberty under the law.

Well done to DD for raising this issue, and presumably he will win by a country mile, but thats hardly the point is it. Hopefully turnout will not be as low as some have feared.

Could someone enlighten me on whether Ann Widdecombe is likely to reisgn her seat and retire in the Autumn? I understand the LD's are already selecting a candidate so something must be up, but no word here?

Funny how the polls on 42 days seem to reflect the views (just check the Yougov/ Liberty poll in March as well as those mentioned) of the organisation sponsoring it.

Of course Anthony Wells is going to back the Politicshome poll because he works for Yougov and they organise the Politicshome poll.

My personal view is that none of the polls on 42 days have provided an objective viewpoint of public opinion, just as they don't on most single issues. Basically they are a blunt device to provide the media something to write about and really they have little or no value. They are just too sporadic to make measured assessments of.

As to the Phi5000, does Yougov publish the detailed results of the Phi5000 polls - No. We have no idea who contributes,what the demographics are, how they are run, or what filtering is used and therefore they have no credibility at all. Its just sheer propaganda and those who put credence to them only manage to damage their own credibility, whatever weak excuses the editor of this site might like to make.

Why should we take the word of any jounalists that a poll is representative when scrutiny is not allowed? Even politicians recognise the importance of scrutiny!

Similarly, given Conhome's vested interest in Politicshome and their support of 42 days (for whatever reason) it is disappointing and unsurprising they have attempted to spin it in this way.

As for Politicshome its quickly falling off my viewing list.

Louis Bagshawe:

I am often very critical of your articles but your two posts here seems fair and reasonable. Your point about timing echoes the concerns of raised about the timing of the Conhome 'editorial' on 42 days.

Once could be a mistake, twice don't even try it. Perhaps the editor might come clean about what Conhome's agenda really is?

Was it worth it?

On the balance for me yes - because it has made me aware of the weaknesses at the heart of the party. I was beginning to forget why I supported Davis in the leadership election. Now I remember. The party leadership's behaviour on this has been shoddy to say the least, as I might add has been the behaviour of much of the Westminster 'Conservative media'.

I don't think it was worth it as it would have being much easier if DD had only resigned as Home Secretary and fought his 'campaign' from the backbenches. Instead he decided to mount a costly and unnecessary by-election and although I agree with DD on other issues, I think it was a grave mistake for him to partake in this by-election.

To Andrew Bradley

'Touche' - Point taken.

The idea that it's wrong for us to publish this today is overbrlown methinks. Do people really believe that hundreds of people in H&H are really going to be influenced by this blog?

Over the last few weeks we have been, I think, very fair to David Davis - something he has acknowledged privately to us.

We have published polling of members that he has quoted;

We have published a Platform piece from him;

We have attacked The Telegraph twice for incorrect reporting of his relationship with David Cameron;

We have published his manifesto;

Regularly linked to his website from our homepage;

Linked to supportive articles from the likes of Bob Geldof and Tim collins;

Published Baroness Neville-Jones' arguments against 42 days.

I'll stop there!

If turnout is lower than 40% David Davis will have shown that he can't even inspire his own constituents.

Louise, I am not a big supporter of you on here but I do thank you for taking up the cudgels you have gone up in my estimation.

Editor, sadly there may well be some truth to what Donal wrote about your willingness to pick a contrary position to DD. I have noticed in the past that you gave less prominence to things DD had said and done on this site than some less able shadow cabinet colleagues.

Our liberty deserves better and you need to reflect on it.

Editor,

This being "ConservativeHome" you could hardly not link to the list of items you've mentioned above. It would be strange indeed if you didn't cover a Conservative fighting to regain his seat after resigning.

It's not what you have linked to, or put up on here that is the problem - it's what you have written personally and your timing.

I agree that not many people in H&H are really going to be influenced by this blog. But the media will. This post, just like your PMQs post on 42 days will be picked up by the press, and so will the ridiculously titled (IT'S OFFICIAL: DAVID DAVIS' CAMPAIGN A TOTAL FAILURE) post on PoliticsHome.

Those who want slavish commentary of everything Conservative should go to conservatives.com!

It's obvious from that PoliticsHome poll that DD hasn't succeeded. Thankfully.

For the record, I was involved in helping PoliticsHome set up but I play no active role in it anymore. I do not help it choose its questions for polls or its stories it picks.

Was it worth it? You ask.
Is our freedom worth fighting for??

These are DD achievements:-

1. We now all know the name of an honest politician; and he is a conservative. In days to come that will be remembered and is a good investment.

2. He has called to the cause, Tony Benn and Bob Geldof. Now I have disagreed with both men in the past, but neither is a corrupt, money grubbing sort; and both have influence with non-Conservatives. So the comment that DD has a 'wide tent' on the subject is valid. And that might help break the log jam on class hatred politics.

3. There is more awareness of the damage done to our freedoms by Labour. That the Westminster Village, including the media, have not taken up the debate, but instead chose to question DD, is to your detriment and a disservice to the public. But with any luck the debate is now open, and will be referred to at relevant points. I doubt it will go away.

The farce is the way that the by-election has gone. And again the press should have made a lot more noise about Labour's cowardly stance - shame on you, not DD.

I doubt any of this would have been achieved if DD had stayed. The matter would have gone to the Lords, the debate would not have been reported. Forty two days would not have been linked to a contextual freedom campaign, and we would have continued to think all politicians were self-seeking; including the conservative ones.

As for the 5000 poll. I think you need to ask questions as to why the ICM result is so different - because the only way your result is right, is if it was corroborated by ICM. Besides the panel set up, I would suggest the word terrorist is also deflecting answers. David Davis is campaigning on our freedoms including ID cards, so asking about 42 days for terrorists isn't telling us much about DD's campaign. I find the result that nearly two thirds are happy to see magna carta overturned very odd. Any good researcher would take a sense check on the answers. Especially given all the people in the Lords who know what they are doing, and oppose 42 days.

I suggest you do some qualitative work to frame your questions correctly, look at segmenting answers by relevant value groups,(ie those who think magna carta relevant today and those who don't), ask contextual question like support of ID cards and crosstab, and ask a set of people who have not been asked the question on a panel for the last fortnight; a representative 1000 would be more than enough.

"Let's get this straight.

You question the ICM poll for leading their respondents?

How about asking 5000 thousand people their opinion, and 17 days later asking the same 5000 people to admit they got it wrong? Is that accurate - do you like to admit you were wrong? I don't."

Posted by: Steve Green

Think he's angling for a job in the next Irish EU referendum ?

:)

Editor,
I think you need to educate people about the nature of tracker polls.

There seems to be a lot of ignorance (and shooting the messenger) on this thread today.

"For the record, I was involved in helping PoliticsHome set up but I play no active role in it anymore."

Posted by: Editor

Isn't that what Rumsfeld said about the Taliban ?

It was certainly worth it. The bottom line is David Davis is no longer on the frontbench. He was going to do something cavalier like this at some point. It's good he did it now. If he'd exploded closer to the election it could have been more damaging to Cameron.

IDS and DD split?

Crap!

IDS went up to Haltemprice to campaign plus Nick Wood is media man for DD AND IDS.

Whilst I'm a great fan of Louise Bagshawe (12:09), I really can't get too hot under the collar about CH publishing this article today. (It's certainly not on a par with the 42-day heresy!)

Anyone who imagines the good burghers of Haltemprice & Howden will decide whether or not to vote on the basis of a CH thread needs to get a grip. If it affects turnout by so much as a single voter I would be astonished. (Though, of course, we'll never know.)

I've decided not to vote today on the strength of this thread.

Yes it was absolutely worth it. And the ICM poll clearly shows that. The ICM poll also has the most balanced questions and can be fully scrutinised unlike the Politics Home one. As it is the PHI5000 stands for diddly squat.

A better question would be what has happened to ConservativeHome in the last few months? It's steadily losing the right to its name every day. Its more like headline grabbers R us or splits R us or settle scores with others in the party R us.

If ConHome really wanted to make mischief it could report what Tory MPs are saying about Davis. It's vicious. Tim and Sam must have heard it all.

If ConHome really wanted to make mischief it could report what Tory MPs are saying about Davis. It's vicious. Tim and Sam must have heard it all.

Yeah, Vince, that would really work, wouldn't it, because as we all know, most people hold Tory MPs in very high esteem and value their opinion. Errr ....

What's being misrepresented in the ConHome op-ed (which is what it was, wrap it up in whatever shiny YouGov paper you want) isn't what Tory MPs think. It's whether what David Davis did last month was 'worth it', which self-evidently isn't something that can be measured by asking a couple of questions, loaded or not, and then reporting the result.

(Childishly, it's tempting to ask whether, if you'd polled the British public after the Munich Agreement, Churchill's anti-appeasement stance would have been deemed 'worth it' - but for better or for worse, we didn't have ConHome to give us a clear steer on the importance of following the leadership back then.)

Was it worth it? It was for us -

http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=KsqYihgo0AI

Very, very funny BR

Was the stand for liberty worth while - and then a lot of babble about opinion polls.

A stand for traditional liberty is a noble thing - there was a time when a Conservative would not have needed to be told that.

That the Labour government has not had the courage to put up a candidate has indeed reduced turn out - but that is hardly the fault of Mr Davis. Mr Davis is not the leader of the Labour party - Mr Brown is the leader of the Labour party.

Ditto who is shadow Home Secretary is not up to Mr Davis - it is up to the leader of the Conservative party Mr Cameron.

If Mr Cameron chooses not to appoint Mr Davis as shadow Home Secretary then it will tell the country all we need to know about how much Mr Cameron values traditional liberty.

Lastly:

For some reason you toss in the term "social justice" and suggest that it is a good idea for the Conservative party to support this doctrine.

Please read such writers as M.J. Oakeshott, F.A. Hayek and Antony Flew on "social" or "distributive" "justice" and how wildly different it is from the conservative conception of justice.

Its precisely our liberties to be free from arbitrary imprisonment and other barbaric punishments that these religious (self defined Mulsims) terrorist (they blow stuff up without warning) fanatics (who are happy to die for their 'faith')want to remove. I love the strand of unthinking tory opinion that believes we need to destroy our liberties in order to save them. Go go go DD!

Shame on you for your irresponsibility. I think DD did a magnificent thing. I salute him.

He is now the conscience of the Tory party on civil liberties as IDS is on social justice.

I don't think comparisons with IDS are very relevant. IDS comprehensively sought to damage the Conservatives in the 1990s with his lack of loyalty on the European question, damaging John Major's leadership, one Conservative who did care about social justice

David Davis is right to take the stand that he did. His move looks courageous, and it is courageous because of the personal risks which he has taken. The subject of civil liberties has been raised in a mature way by Davis, and I fully expect Cameron to give him a senior position in any future Conservative cabinet.

I went to help out in the campaign at the constituency, although I am not a member of the Conservative Party and I do not live in Haltemprice and Halton constituency (in fact I live a long way away). I went because I felt so strongly that Davis should be supported.

The press and the media have been contemptible. I also find it hard to understand ConHome's behaviour on this issue.

He is genuine and he did a good thing - however the vote works out. Someone has to stand up against the rot and decay that is going on in our civil liberties. If that is "eccentric" then so am I.

No - unless he had a secret agenda. We can always hope.

Too many sad apparachiks, careerists and cynics who don't under stand the nature of DD's quixotic gesture...it isn't about whether some poll or other (in this case a poll of apparachiks, careerists and cynics hasn't shifted - why am I not surprised) reports changes in support but whether this crucial issue remains in the public spotlight. In that respect - judging by the coverage and by the comments of ordinary folk - DD's campaign is a success and a worthy one. I find it sad that there are so many of my fellow Conservatives who seem just to see the glorious prospect of being in power rather than the real opportunity to right some wrongs - DD has made this possible which is his biggest achievement. Bigger than being Home Secretary.

No Julwhite. It was the rebels who remained the loyal Conservatives and the government that betrayed us in the 1990s. That's why we stopped voting for it. It wasn't socialists who stopped voting Tory you know.

1. Yes it was worth it. This fact is completely independent of the finding of any opinion poll, and the fact that we're debating it in those terms shows how debased political discourse in this country has become. Note to PHI- there is more to a theory of knowledge than "who's up? Who's down?"- regardless of how hysterically the question is posed.

2. Next CH "voice of the grassroots" "members'" survey should ask: " Do you think Widdecombe should resign her seat to fight a by-election on 42 days, the issue she feels so strongly about that she voted against our front bench?".

Actually I feel very strongly about point 2. CH should poll us on Widdecombr next time. Does anyone agree?

So julwhite you think IDS sought to damage the Conservative party. He stood on the most important principal of all self-government and the survival of the nation, that transcends party loyalty.

On the principal point of this thread I applaud DD and hope that he is recognised for upholding values that contributed to making this nation great - something that lab new or old have always sought to diminish.

Louise Bagshawe wins the order of the brown tounge--for today!!!

What else are people supposed to do when the party has been taken over by a bunch of Old Etonian (sorry Gideon: old Etonian and old St. Pauls) public school boys who, in effect, say, you can be Shadow Home Secretary and maybe, perhaps (who knows what the might actually do?) Home Secretary if you sign here and agree to be our bitch.

I hope Davis wins.

Someone needs to take a stand and say that this ridiculous detour that we as a party are taking is a waste of (other people's) time and effort and that there are better things to do than follow the vanity of call me Dave and Gideon Osborne.

You know, this used to be an important and purposeful political party...

I've just made it home, to London, from helping in H&H today. I'm tired, my feet ache and I have battled with public transport all day. But it was worth it. At least now when things spiral slowly downward into a Stasi-esque nightmare I can say I did something to help rather than carp from the sidelines and pick non-existent holes.

We wrote a song about David Davis and his by-election it's called "Most Unlikely Civil Liberties Defender of All" and it can be heard here:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KsqYihgo0AI

Well done Emma! It looks like turn out could be around 35% giving David near to, or a greater number votes than in 2005. Was it worth it.... YES!

Andrew Bradley at 1248. I was born when bananas and orange juice were rationed. a Labour govt of course. I had a biological father and mother who were (gasp) married. I was Baptised. And I have a Christian name. If you wish to support modern libertarianism, fair enough. Go and post on the Orange Party site. But do not EVER deny me my right to a Christian name. which can be interpreted as "peaceful, of great strength". Here endeth the rant.

or a greater number votes than in 2005
Given that turnout was 70.1% in 2005 and the Conservative vote was 47.5% of the Popular Vote that seems improbable, the percentage vote will probably be up but the total vote will not be and I suspect that the Green Party at the very least will save their deposit and the Monster Raving Loony Party may well do surprisingly well in terms of percentage vote.

Maybe some people will even have voted for David Icke who no doubt will give his theories on 12 foot alien lizards running the world.

On the 'christian name' thing. I gave it little thought at the time, I guess on forms we do say forenames. Like Sally I am not a christian and I really doubt it offends anyone other than christians who are worried about offending people! I am not sure how it is offensive - my partner is Muslim and I asked her whether she would find it offensive if i referred to her 'christian name' and she does not.

I realise a sample of one is not exactly representative.

Furthermore, I meant it to be generally light hearted - I do still there is a slightly serious point in there though, as with most political based comedy.

Thanks for the reply though. I will endeavor to be more PC in the future!

Well done David Davis, 17119 votes is a decent share of a 35% turnout.

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