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IS 42 DAYS GORDON BROWN'S POLL TAX?

13-06-2008

Are the Conservatives changing their spots? Regular Stirrer columnist Dr David Nicholl writes on why David Davis could inspire him to vote Tory for the first time in his life.

Not once in my life have I ever voted Conservative, in all honesty, the idea of voting Conservative has always induced a feeling of nausea.

I went on a demo as a student to protest at Thatcher’s attempt to bring in tuition fees- even Mrs Thatcher baulked at it in the end, it took New Labour to do that. Nonetheless the actions of David Davis, the Tory shadow Home Secretary, to resign his seat must rank as one of the most courageous political decisions in years.

His decision to make his bye-election a vote on this government’s attack on civil liberties reads like the plot of the award-winning documentary "Taking Liberties".

Yet he is prepared to do this even though the majority of the British public are with the government on detention without trial for 42 days.

Davis has made a very brave decision to stand on this platform- indeed I cannot think of a British politician who would have the balls to do this.

So for the first time in my life, I find myself thinking, if the Conservatives are prepared to stand up for these fundamental civil liberties that, in my view, define Britishness, then they have my vote.

We are at a pivotal moment in our history where we have to decide to operate as proper democracy or we are heading towards an unelected dictatorship with all the threats that entails.

You think I’m exaggerating? If 42 days gets passed, we will have the most draconian legislation anywhere in the Western World, brought in by a Prime Minister who was elected unopposed using, in effect, the bribery of minor political parties.

Meanwhile, this weekend, the Police have banned a legitimate protest on Sunday against President Bush’s visit to London. In any other country, we would call this a dictatorship, in this country, it is called New Labour.

If Labour do not have the balls to stand against the Conservatives in this by-election, then Gordon Brown will have bottled it (again).

The question is, does David Cameron fully support David Davis in his actions or is Cameron, as many have suggested, just Blair-lite? This is our Poll Tax moment and which side are the Conservatives really on. If the Tories are really on the side of Mr Davis, I’ll be joining the party as quick as you can say “Mrs Thatcher”.

WHAT DO YOU MAKE OF DAVID DAVIS' DECISION? JOIN THE THREAD ON THE MESSAGE BOARD HERE

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