Who Will Be Home Secretary? 15

It is now plain that there is deadlock between Cameron and Clegg over who will be Home Secretary. That is hardly surprising. I have argued before that the most important political dividing line in this country is not left and right, but between libertarian and authoritarian.


New Labour was the most authoritarian government this country has seen since the days of Lord Liverpool. Home Secretaries David Buinkett, Charles Clarke, Jack Straw and John Reid led a full-on attack on civil liberties in this country. I have no time whatsoever for those commenters who would have preferred the evil men of New Labour o remain in power.

The Lib Dems are strongly tilted to the libertarian side, though they do have authoritarians, and that wing is close to Clegg.

But the Tories are absolutely split down the middle on libertarian/authoritarian lines. A lot of Tories want to ban immigrants, deport hundreds of thousands and lock up very many more people than our prisons can hold. Cameron would be in huge problems with his right wing if he put a Lib Dem in charge of the Home Office.

But equally the Lib Dems could not accept a Tory right winger. The ludicrous neo-con, second home flipper and cheerleader for uninformed Islamophobia, Michael Gove, will get the job according to Iain Dale. I do not see how the Lib Dems can live with tat, nor with Chris Grayling and his dodgy attitude to gay rights. David Davis’ genuine belief in civil liberties alarms some of his own party. This is an important development to watch.

I have not yet heard any mention of reform of the House of Lords. I would have thought that should have been a fundamental point for the Lib Dems.


Perhaps predictably, Cameron has resolved the situation by appointing a non-entity, Theresa May. She has always struck me as vacuous and unpleasant. But the great offices line up of Cameron, Osborne, Hague, Fox and May looks very right wing indeed. I think there is going to be a great deal of unhappiness in the Lib Dems about this – including me.

May has a mixed record – for example against ID cards and war on terror legislation, but also anti-gay rights, and pro Iraq war.


Allowed HTML - you can use: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

15 thoughts on “Who Will Be Home Secretary?

  • Jon

    From the Beeb: “0955: The Lib Dems have got another of their big wishes – we’ve learned that there’s going to be wholesale reform of the House of Lords, early in the parliament, to make it fully elected. And the method they’re going to use to elect it? Proportional representation, the system the Lib Dems have loved for so long, says the BBC News channel’s chief political correspondent Laura Kuenssberg.”

  • Ed

    Thanks for the update, Craig.

    If your maths is correct (that Tories are 50/50 and LD are majority civil libertarians), then the democratic outcome would be a civil libertarian Home Sec. But you seem to be saying that’s not the natural inclination of the PM and his Deputy… so perhaps it is less a Cameron-Clegg dispute than one where they are battling Tory-Libdem subfactions.

    Crazy stuff this coalition politics, but so far, I have been surprised on the upside.

  • glenn

    So Lib Dem David Laws might end up as Education Secretary. That’s great. The Tories don’t give two hoots about state run education, so Laws is on a hiding to nothing. He can have a diminished budget and little support, and take the blame when the Cinderella service tanks.

  • alan campbell

    Contamination by the Con-Dem Nation.

    Likelihood of another election by this time next year and Lib Dems down to less than 20%?

  • Shafiq

    To be honest, I’m just happy Gove isn’t HomeSec.

    Ken Clarke being Lord Chancellor/Justice Sec is a good thing

  • Shafiq

    From my experience of under-age Asians, those that want to smoke don’t care whether the law is supposedly meant to prevent them from buying tobacco.

  • mrjohn

    ID cards, under another name, will be bundled into the bill for electoral reform.

  • tony_opmoc

    The fact of the matter is that “democracy” has proved itself not to work very well.

    In the UK a counter-balance to this has been the House of Lords which historically has largely been hereditary, but with very limited real powers, the best of which has been to block extremely silly measures.

    To make the House of Lords fully “democratic” at first thought seems entirely reasonable, but the likely result will be that it will end up being stuffed with the same kind of evil psychopaths we have had to suffer under for the last 13 years.

    Someone who inherits a position of “power”, is likely not to have any real personal power agenda, and is much more likely to think of his “duties” as a burden which he fullfils not for any personal benefit.

    Its as if he was almost selected at random.

    There’s a lot of truth in the belief that anyone who actually seeks to control others is likely to be the least suitable to do the job well.

    Just look at the bunch of reprobates that we currently have as a result of “democracy”.

    It makes me shudder.


  • Owen Lee Hugh-Mann

    12.05.2010. “I do not see how the Lib Dems can live with……Chris Grayling and his dodgy attitude to gay rights.”

    04.04.2010. “I confess I do not share the outrage at Chris Graylings’ comments.”


  • Cosmetic Brain Surgery

    Theresa May is a good local MP from what I’ve seen & heard but she did vote for Trident using Iran as one of her reasons?

Comments are closed.