The law that wasn't: that 90 day terror argument in full
The gist of the proposal was that terrorists are notoriously hard to catch, thus if we can detain everybody who looks a bit foreign for as long as possible, the chances of nabbing one by accident go up. You can't fault the logic.
You also can't fault the post-defeat assertion that if another act of terrorism is carried out by someone who had to be released before three months had elapsed, that would be a Bad Thing. It may be a completely ridiculous line of argument to take, given that the same logic dictates that, in the name of national security, everyone should be locked up indefinitely; but such is the way of the Tone and the Elephant.
By having the cheek to not be known to the police prior to killing themselves, the four 7/7 bombers have left New Labour with precious little actual evidence to support their demands for draconian measures, so they've had to make them up. Which takes time. Which is inconvenient.
That's part of the reason for pushing towards a police state—no more fannying around with the silly debating lark.
Inside Number 10, they prefer not to speak of a 'defeat'. This is merely a challenge. And Tony loves a challenge. Accepting he'll have to wait a while until he can try again to extend the period innocents can be held without trial for, he's taking a more subtle approach, and extending the amount of things people can be held on suspicion for.
This list is thought to include the suspicion of making jokes about the prime minister, thinking about praying more than twice a day and dreaming about running for the Tory leadership.
Obviously, now that the backbenchers have tasted rebellion, they're keen for more. Thus to avoid any more humiliations, these new plans are coupled with a further scheme intended to actually get them through—don't tell the rebels that the votes are happening.
It's a subtle trick, one believed to be inspired by Sun Tzu, who, in The Art of War, recommends that:
"The enemy must not know where I intend to give battle. For if he does not know where I intend to give battle, he must prepare in a great many places."
By voting on Bills covertly, and at hours of the day when most opposition MPs are busy dreaming of, well, being Tory leader, funnily enough, Tony should be able to push through his plans with ease.