Brown Hangs Tough to Win Terrorism Vote

UK PM denies buying support for increase in detention time
By Jason Farago,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 12, 2008 9:51 AM CDT
The House of Commons during yesterday's vote to back tougher terror laws that will allow police to hold suspected terrorists for up to six weeks without charge.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – Prime Minister Gordon Brown prevailed in a crunch vote last night to extend Britain's period of detention without trial for terror suspects to 6 weeks, the BBC reports. Brown avoided defeat by convincing a small Northern Ireland party to support him after 36 members of his Labour Party joined the opposition to vote against the bill.

"I do not offer deals on terrorism," said Brown, who today chastised journalists who suggested otherwise for "impugning the reputation of people who are concerned about terrorism." Yet one Labour MP who was set to rebel eventually voted with the government "to save Gordon for the nation." If the enfeebled prime minister had lost, "he would have been on his way out."