Liberal Democrats could 'kill' web monitoring proposals
Sunday 08 April 2012
Liberal Democrat president Tim Farron today vowed the party would “kill” proposals for increased monitoring of emails and internet use if they were not watered down.
Mr Farron said he was "prepared" to look at draft legislation, dubbed a "snoopers charter", when it is published but warned he was "in no mood" to back "authoritarian" laws.
Many Lib Dems were "horrified" by the plans, which would allow Government listening post GCHQ to monitor internet traffic - times, dates, numbers and addresses - in real time.
Mr Farron told BBC 1's Andrew Marr Show: "I am prepared to recognise that there is obviously a need in modern society with new technology to have a look at what needs to be given to the security services but only if it is absolutely clear there is no universal access.
"But we are prepared to kill them, be absolutely clear about that, if it comes down to it.
"If we think this is a threat to a free and liberal society then there would be no question of unpicking them or compromising, this just simply must not happen."
The Government has faced an intense backlash over the plans, with senior Conservatives joining Lib Dems and civil rights campaigners in warning they would cause a gross intrusion into freedom and privacy.
Mr Farron said he would be "surprised" if the Bill ended up looking "anything like the press reports we have had this week".
He said: "My conversations with the Deputy Prime Minister and others reveal that there has been significant movement this week."
Mr Farron added: "It is important to be reasonable and look at the draft legislation, as it now will be, and see what it says and look at it on its own merit.
"But I have to say I'm in no mood whatsoever to apologise for, or to amend or unpick authoritarian legislation.
"It strikes me that a Government that includes Liberal Democrats should ensure that Britain ends up a more liberal place, not less."
Nick Clegg insisted earlier this week the Government was simply "updating the rules" to allow the police and security services "to go after terrorists and serious criminals" who are using the internet to communicate.
- 1 Caitlyn Jenner car crash: Driver who died in collision sued by surviving passengers for $18.5m
- 3 Watch the Supermoon live: How to see the brightest Moon of the year tonight
- 4 Hulk Hogan wants to be Donald Trump's running mate in the US Presidential election
Caitlyn Jenner car crash: Driver who died in collision sued by surviving passengers for $18.5m
Celebrity Big Brother 2015: Tila Tequila kicked off show after 'describing Hitler as a good man'
Watch the Supermoon live: How to see the brightest Moon of the year tonight
Hulk Hogan wants to be Donald Trump's running mate in the US Presidential election
Blood Moon and Supermoon: September to bring brightest – and dimmest – full Moon of the year on same night
Climate change: 2015 will be the hottest year on record 'by a mile', experts say
'Women only' train carriages: Jeremy Corbyn unveils radical move to tackle public harassment
Black holes are a passage to another universe, says Stephen Hawking
Iain Duncan Smith 'should resign over disability benefit death figures', says Jeremy Corbyn
Stock up on canned food for stock market crash, warns former Gordon Brown adviser
Tony Blair attacks Jeremy Corbyn's 'Alice In Wonderland' politics
£18000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Sales Executive or Senior Sal...
£40000 - £55000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...
£22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This industry leading company produces h...
£20000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This IT provider for the educat...