Lib Dems push Labour over Commons voting reform

Patrick Wintour, writing in the Guardian, predicts that the Labour Party will try to make an election issue out of the retention of innocent people’s DNA on the database in England and Wales:

Ministers acknowledge in private that reforms covering the retention of DNA, schools and the constitution may have to be shelved in the frantic negotiations next week. In the wash-up, the two front benches in the Commons and Lords indulge in complex horsetrading on what bills and clauses they can agree. Government members say the chief bottleneck lies in the Lords, partly because the government has no overall majority there, and partly because the Lords procedures allow any peer to table and speak to an amendment on a specific bill, and no guillotine can be allowed.

McNally confirmed that the Liberal Democrats would vote with the Tories to block proposals to allow the police to keep DNA for as long as six years, an issue that Labour will use as a campaign weapon.