As Conservative Party leader David Cameron sweeps into Downing Street confirming his intention to form a coalition with the Liberal Democrats, the final death-knell of the ID card scheme has been sounded – and indeed a possible new approach to identity management.
Both political parties had fought the UK’s general election partly on the basis of abolishing ID cards. After five days of frantic horse trading between the parties the ID scheme is likely to be one of the early casualties of the election.
During discussions with the Liberal Democrats before the coalition agreement, Mr Cameron commented ‘we share a common commitment to civil liberties, and to getting rid – immediately – of Labour’s ID card scheme.’
Mr Cameron will be announcing his cabinet and outlining commitments in the coming days.
The Liberal Democrats were originally mooting plans to scrap the move to second generation passports, but it is likely this will be a step too far. *Ed’s note: As it turns out this was not a step too far, and second generation passports are for the chopping block too, a move that will put the UK far behind its European partners...
The fate of the foreign national ID card scheme is also unclear. This compulsory ID card for foreign nationals was introduced in November 2008, and is for migrants from outside the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland.
Under our previous roll-out plans, by April 2011 any migrant extending their stay in the UK or coming to the UK for more than six months would have needed to apply for an identity card for foreign nationals as part of their immigration application.