Great Britain: A Fair Cop

The great clock in the House of Commons showed midnight as the debate on Labor's complex finance bill droned on into its 14th week. Government Whip John Silkin, charged with protecting Prime Minister Harold Wilson's scant three-vote margin, made a perfunctory check of the floor. There were 165 Laborites v. a mere 33 Tories still on hand. That seemed a safe enough edge for the government, and he told many of his Labor M.P.s that they could go home.

It was just what the Tories hoped he would do. All evening they had been streaming ostentatiously out of the House as...

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