Jon Snow roasted Diane Abbott over Labours ability to counter terrorism during TV clash
Many would view Labours ability to counter terrorism as awful. Jon Snow did not waste any time in questioning Diane Abbott to see if that was, in fact, the case.
Mr Snow tsarted off by grilling Mrs Abbott over her votes to block anti-terror legislation.
He said: “Although 13 times you voted in favour of it and 27 times you decided to abstain, that doesn’t show a particularly tough devotion to keeping terrorists at bay.”
The Labour candidate responded half-heartedly saying Labour is “committed” to fighting terrorism.
She said: “On the question of whether the Labour party is committed to fighting terrorism and on the question as to whether the current leadership is committed to fighting terrorism – of course we are.”
Snow then asked: “What does your resistance to anti-terror legislation tell us though?”
Ms Abbott proceeded to respond but was soon cut off by the journalist.
She said: “One of the pieces of anti-terror legislation that I didn’t vote for was an attempt to bring in 90 days detention without trial.
“And all the evidence showed us from Northern Ireland that bringing in detention without trial in that way would have…”
“But 58 times against it for Jeremy Corbyn means much more than that,” Snow fired back.
However, Ms Abbott said the presenter’s line of questioning was not “helpful”.
She said: “Some of the elements of anti-terrorism legislation, which people were sceptical about, we believed would be a recruiting sergeant for terrorism.
“And our experience in Northern Ireland proved that but to query the Labour party’s commitment to fighting terrorism now I don’t think is helpful – I don’t think it’s right.”
She said: “There will be some concern that it’s cuts in policing which has meant you need the troops now… they began under Labour but they are Theresa May’s cuts also.
“But as I say, I don’t want to engage in party politics. I do hope though we don’t see troops on the streets longer than is necessary.”
Diane Abbott has recently been attacked for her backing of a House of Commons motion to abolish MI5 and specific parts of the metropolitan police force.
I don’t know about you, but I would feel far less safe if Labour was in government countering terrorism.