Politics has suddenly become very entertaining for all the wrong reasons. MPs' expense claims have come under scrutiny and the exercise has revealed some extraordinary behaviour. Elliot Morley (Labour) suffered a shocking lapse of memory when he continued claiming interest for a further eighteen months after he had paid his mortgage in full. He felt that he had not committed an offence but had simply forgotten. Arrogant, dishonest or stupid?
Andrew MacKay (Tory) who thinks it 'very important that MPs are held in high regard' and whose wife Julie Kirkbride is also a Conservative MP, claimed second home allowance for mortgage interest on their London home up to the end of the last financial year. At the same time his wife claimed the same allowance for their Bromsgrove home. Effectively, they had two second homes and no primary residence. Arrogant, dishonest or stupid?
Apparently they had taken professional advice 'at the highest level', and though it is not clear which body provided such advice it is believed that the fees office was involved.
The people of the UK are appalled, amused, angry, disbelieving, shocked by turns. The concensus seems to be that because ordinary citizens would be charged with committing a criminal offence if they had behaved in similar fashion the same fate should befall their guilty representatives in Parliament.
I'm sure there are many honest and intelligent MPs but presently they are sadly overshadowed by their arrogant, dishonest or stupid colleagues.