ID cards (Supplementary) [3]

Session date: 
June 15, 2005
Question By: 
Angie Bray
GLA Conservatives
Asked Of: 
Sir Ian Blair, Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis


Do you think that in hindsight, given those doubts which you are expressing today, albeit within certain limits, that it was entirely appropriate for you to wade in on such a controversial issue as this, when all three mainstream parties had particular views on it, during the general election campaign? The Independent on Sunday said, `it should have been unthinkable for Britain's most senior police officer to endorse a controversial government policy in the run up to the general election'. Others were also critical of you, and given that you could have couched it, as you have done today, in more reasonable, doubting fashion, which might have left it less of a support for a particular party's policy, in hindsight do you think you might have done it better?

Supplementary To: 


Answer for ID cards (Supplementary) [3]

Answer for ID cards (Supplementary) [3]

Answered By: 
Sir Ian Blair, Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis

Anybody can always do it better. The broad criticism of that interview was whether I should have done it at all, and I am absolutely clear that, within the aftermath of the Bourgass trial, and with commentators saying that this proved there was not a threat to the UK, it was the job of the Commissioner to say, `Actually, I am sorry, this is a real and present threat.- The particular issue that I raised was that we do not know who Bourgass is, and then we go in to the issue around ID cards. I am not in the slightest bit repentant; I think it was exactly the right thing to do.