- …and Labour MPs say they will support the Tory’s stand?
An ICM for the Mail on Sunday taken on Friday of adults in Haltemprice and Howden, shows massive support for the area’s MP as he seeks to resign his seat and fight a by election over Gordon’s move to increase to six weeks the length of time suspects can be held without trial.
The main findings are summarised in the panel above. Asked how they would vote in a general election H&H electors said, with comparisons on the last general election – CON 59% (+11): LD 26% (-11): LAB 12% (-1).
Those interviewed split 57% to 32% saying they supported their MPs decision with 69% to just 23% saying they felt Davis’s decision was “principled”. The findings are even more striking because the fieldwork took place on Friday when the media view of Davis’s action was almost universally negative.
The paper also reports that a Labour MP who rebelled on the 42 days, Bob Marshall-Andrews, has pledged his support for the Davis campaign – a move that could land him, again, in serious trouble with his party. The Sunday Times says other Labour MPs could join him.
Under the heading, “Suddenly, Labour is not laughing at David Davis” the Observer’s Gaby Hinsliff writes “..What was a crisis for David Cameron is now becoming a serious headache for Gordon Brown, who must now decide whether to discipline his rebellious MP and turn him into a dangerous martyr, or ignore him and risk others joining in, turning a by-election that Brown dismissed as a farcical stunt into a cross-party uprising. Is British politics seeing the emergence of something genuinely new? Perhaps.”
There’s little doubt that the Davis move has touched a raw nerve right across the political spectrum that cannot be categorised in the normal Right-Left pigeon holes. All this is helped by Davis’s image – with his SAS background he looks like an old fashioned authoritarian Tory but isn’t.
So where is this all going to go? It’s hard to say but perhaps the biggest losers will be the “smarty-pants experts” in the so-called Westminster village – and that will be no bad thing.