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by GK Strategy 26th September, 2014
3 min read

Total Recall

Parliament will sit today following its recall by the Prime Minister to seek the approval of MPs’ for British involvement in air strikes against the terror group Isis in Iraq. This is the fifth time in David Cameron’s premiership that he has recalled Parliament, something of a record; to find another example, you’d have to go back to 2002, when Tony Blair called a similar debate on Iraq’s phantom WMDs.

The Prime Minister will be keen to use today as a show of strength, having faced staunch criticism for not recalling Parliament sooner three years ago following the riots, and likewise several months before that for his management of the phone hacking scandal, when Ed Miliband received praise for his handling of the issue.

Nigel Farage has been doing the media rounds, pushing the idea that today’s Parliamentary session might have been scheduled as a distraction from UKIP’s party conference, which kicks off today in Doncaster. The Prime Minister may be eager to draw attention away from Nigel Farage’s party, but the idea that a critical vote on restarting military operations would have been delayed merely to irritate Cameron’s arch-irritant is off the mark. The truth is rather more prosaic: Cameron was returning from a United Nations meeting – and a historic summit with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani – in New York yesterday.

On the eve of Conservative Party Conference and a mere eight months away from the General Election, Westminster will watch today with bated breath. The reality however is that after last year’s crushing defeat on military action in Syria – when 30 Tories and 9 Lib Dems rebelled – he would not have pushed the button on today’s recall without being totally certain of victory.

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