Speeches sourced from the Labour party’s online archive More…

Yvette Cooper MP, Labour's Shadow Home Secretary, responding to the Government's defeat in the House of Lords last night on its plans for elected police commissioners, said:

"The Lords today have ripped the heart out of this deeply flawed flag ship bill. The Tories plans for American-style elected police commissioners without any checks and balances are deeply flawed and un-British. David Cameron and Theresa May need to now recognise the strength of hostility and ditch the plans now.

"The Government’s policy would concentrate considerable power in the hands of one politician but with no proper checks and balances in place. They put at risk centuries of operational independence of the police. They are also opposed by crime and policing experts, and by the public too.

"Although Nick Clegg and the Liberal Democrat whips continued to support the Tories plans, many cross benchers and Liberal Democrats voted with Labour against the central part of the bill.

"The Tories and the Liberal Democrat leadership now need to listen and drop plans which risk politicising the police."

Lord Hunt, Labour's Home Affairs spokesperson in the House of Lords, said:

"The debate showed the huge strength of feeling against the bill from all sides of the house. This amendment removes the most important part of the bill and I don't see how it can proceed now. The House of Lords rarely shows the breadth and strength of opposition to any bill as we have seen today -it is a sign of its deep flaws and wider constitutional implications. The Government needs to drop the bill."

 

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