Jeremy Corbyn and Richard Burgon are among the MPs who have committed to voting against a crucial policing bill in parliament next week.
The new bill will cover a wide range of areas, from sentencing to digital information, but has a specific section on the policing of protests.
According to Politics.co.uk editor Ian Dunt “the function of this section is simple: It aims to silence them. It is cancel culture on a statutory footing, directed against the left.”
Corbyn has said he will vote against the bill along with Burgon in a move that echoes opposition to the so-called spy cops Bill passed last year.
The former Labour leader said: “The last thing the Police need is more powers at this time”, while Burgon added: “The last 24 hours has again shown why that is totally unacceptable.”
Next week the government will try to force through a bill giving the police even more powers to restrict protests.— David Schneider (@davidschneider) March 14, 2021
What happened at the vigil shows how vital it is this bill is stopped.pic.twitter.com/3Ne4DCMUAO
Pressure has mounted on Sir Keir Starmer to do the same, but his response this weekend suggests he is unlikely to oppose the bill.
In a typically soft-touch approach he said: “This was not the way to police this protest”, adding that he shares the “anger and upset at how this has been handled”.
The Liberal Democrats, on the other hand, took a much more direct approach, calling for the resignation of Commissioner Dame Cressida Dick.
They described scenes at Clapham Common as a “complete abject tactical and moral failure on the part of the police”.
Attention will now turn to Starmer as people await his next move.
After the appalling scenes in Clapham Common last night here’s hoping Keir Starmer will change his mind on abstaining on the policing bill this week which would further facilitate police cracking down on peaceful protest #PoliceCrackdownBill pic.twitter.com/IWmAhnPqS5— Diane Abbott MP (@HackneyAbbott) March 14, 2021