Freesteel Blog » Tamsin Dunwoody, a fighter who bangs heads together

Tamsin Dunwoody, a fighter who bangs heads together

Wednesday, May 14th, 2008 at 7:54 pm Written by:

Sometimes the campaign managers need their heads banging together.

I haven’t forgotten the time that Tom Watson MP was sent packing after smearing a LibDem candidate for being “soft on criminals and drugs” for having been employed as a barrister and represented such clients in court in her legal capacity.

Politicians, many of whom have worked in the legal system, knew this was totally unfair because (a) all criminals are entitled to legal representation, and (b) barristers are obliged to take the cases given to them.

And so we come to this press release which appeared yesterday at, which they probably think is fair:

Edward Timpson simply hasn’t got what it takes to make our streets safer and stand up for people in Crewe and Nantwich.


Opposed tougher sentences for dangerous sex offenders.

Opposed 5 year minimum sentences for unauthorised possesion of a gun.

Opposed more powers to crack down on underage drinking.

Local residents are saying they want someone with a track record of action getting tough on yobs to represent them – not some Tory Boy who clearly isn’t up to the job.

It is not good enough to just talk about getting tough on crime, the people of Crewe and Nantwich deserve action.

Tamsin Dunwoody knows what is takes to make our streets safer. She has come forward with a plan of action to cut crime and crackdown on anti-social behaviour. Tamsin Dunwoody wants the police to harass yobs, and get in their faces.

She said: “There’s a lot of talk about human rights, for me the most important human right is to feel safe in your home and community.”

Crewe and Nantwich need a fighter who bangs heads together and gets things done.

Tamsin Dunwoody will always stand up for you and your family, she’s a Dunwoody after all.

Now, there’s no email on the site, and they probably wouldn’t answer my requests for particulars. But the source of the allegation is crucial in order to verify the interpretation.

After all, while LibDems can be branded as woolly-minded and soft on crime (according to brain dead wisdom), it seems peculiar to argue that Tories would refrain from the concept of locking people up and throwing away the key — in cases where that would be a good idea.

You’re supposed to count on the designated right wing party to demand punishments for violent crime on the more extreme side of reasonableness, so to call for something that goes beyond their policies is probably going to be unreasonable.

Therefore, such a one-line allegation that Tories are not being tough enough on crime shouldn’t even hold water.

And anyway, it might not even be their policy, because the evidence could be completely circumstantial.

So, to the particulars. There’s a 22 January 2004 press release by the Home Office: Crime Remains Stable – New Five Year Minimum Gun Sentence.

This is a good start. It leads me to the Criminal Justice Act 2003, more specifically Section 287 of the Criminal Justice Act 2003.

Really handy that. It looks like it was thrown in with this raft of measures as New Clause 46. The vote on that raft is here, and the Tories in fact abstained. If you read the debate, it just seems like chaos, with all the debates truncated, and it just doesn’t look good. Anyways, there’s a very strong case against minimum sentencing, which obviously went over the head of our berzerk Home Secretary David Blunkett at the time.

We are talking about such cases as multiple and sadistic killings, and when terrorists take the lives of others. In more traditional terms, before suicide bombing occurred, there was at least a way of sending signals to and getting retribution from terrorists. We are talking about incidents of child murder, which I have described, and the way in which people abused others before committing such a crime…

I am motivated, as is indicated by the sentencing framework and the new purposes of sentencing, by the desire to show those who are engaged in such actions that there will be clear and unequivocal consequences.

What a mess. There’s no evidence that harsh publishment reduces crime. It’s an ill-informed and ignorant thing to believe, and highly irresponsibly to use a position of authority to tell people it’s true.

I just don’t want to think that this was done for the benefit of one line in an election leaflet, and that there’s a whole tranche of other misleading crap stored up waiting to be shovelled out onto the pages of all the campaign materials. It shouldn’t be done. And more importantly, it shouldn’t succeed. If this was London or Edinburgh, they’d probably be throwing around the “T” word for good measure.

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