Power backs down

The government has backed down on the removal of the right to silence.

It is understood Mr Power will now dump plans to abolish the right to silence and involve the Rules Committee. A spokesman for Mr Power said the minister was pragmatic about the bill.

“He wants to move this along and is always prepared to negotiate, especially to make progress on such an important piece of legislation.”

The spokesman said Mr Power would “do what is takes to get this bill moving”.

With the support of the three ACT MPs and United Future leader Peter Dunne, the Government has the numbers to pass the bill, but by a less than ideal one-vote majority.

Mr Power will be hoping dropping plans to remove the right to silence will bring Mr Boscawen and Mr Hide on board, giving the Government a three-vote majority.

Good show. I had severe reservations about leaving the writing of laws to a Rules Committee of “legal experts”. Imagine of one of those legal experts was Judge Phillipa Cunningham.