June 1st, 2010

Laws Not Above the Law

David Laws may be a great political talent, may be a decent man and may have had his sex life unfairly revealed to the world. Guido doesn’t dispute his merits. Nevertheless, none of this trumps the fact that he took taxpayers’ money to pay his boyfriend’s rent on the quiet.

Mark Pack and Iain Dale wail that it is so unfair and it will drive good people out of politics. No it isn’t.

We should be harder on the misdameanours of politicians than we are on welfare benefits fraudsters, instead time after time they get told to apologise and not do it again or to just pay the ill-gotten gains back and carry on as if nothing had happened.  If you opt for public life you lose some rights to privacy, if you take taxpayers’ money from the public we have an absolute right to know how it is spent down to every last penny. Because legislators make the law it is surely right that we demand the highest standards from them, law-makers can’t be law breakers. If you don’t think you can merit the public’s trust beyond reproach, maybe public service isn’t for you.


313 Comments

  1. 1
    sjm says:

    Thank you GF, puts my thoughts very succinctly, what was that about ‘if you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen’?

  2. 2
    russ says:

    Bravo!

  3. 3

    “we have an absolute right to know how it is spent down to every last penny.”

    I’d draw the line at webcams in the bedroom and bathroom though.

  4. 4
    thick as thieves says:

    Well said ,Guido

    David Laws: Single handedly keeping Kleenex in business since 1876.

  5. 5
    Bob says:

    Hear, hear

  6. 6
    ohmyGoodness says:

    Well put, Guido. I totally agree.

  7. 7
    MI5 says:

    Well said about Laws (and the restof them)

    No one is FORCED to go into politics

    If a person does, he/she can at least do us the favour of not stealing our hard earned money

    and O/T but related

    Now that the Government has “outed” the salaries of top civil servants

    CAN WE HAVE THE SALARIES AND EXPENSES OF THE TOP 100 BBC EARNERS…

    IT IS OUR MONEY AS WELL AFTER ALL….

  8. 8

    you sound like an Israeli pirate

  9. 9
    Eileen Critchley says:

    Fancy trying to hide your sexuality, surely Cabinet Minsters don’t do things like that do they?

    What would that say about you and your party in this day and age!

    Life is so complicated for some.

  10. 10
    Public Lavatory Attendant says:

    Hat -tip Cranmer

    David Laws is effectively the UK’s chief accountant. It appears that he has been paying rent to his partner of nine years, amounting to a sum of £40,000. He insists that he has not personally benefited financially from the arrangement: indeed, it would seem that the taxpayer has made quite a saving. But if Mr Laws had been claiming welfare benefits whilst living with his partner, it would have amounted to theft. While he may not personally have benefited from the arrangement, his common-law civil parter most certainly has. And Mr Laws has ensured this. By assisting his partner to buy another house, he entered into a financial arrangement which, on paper, may be of no benefit to Mr Laws but which, in reality, benbefits them both.

  11. 11
    Cato Street Conspirator says:

    You are 100% right on this Mr Fawkes.

  12. 12
    avseer says:

    Caveat – WE should expect the highest behaviours from everyone. When do you, the Telegraph and eveyrone else start running down the benefit fraudsters, other criminals, et el?
    The ‘elected official’ is a product of their society, what does it say about ours that they thought it was okay?

    David Laws is a very decent man. I regret his behaviour deeply because I feel he had much to offer to our government. It does not excuse the Telegraph ‘suddenly’ finding all this new information and looks like what it is, a smear campaign because their Non-Dom owners didn’t get the government they wanted. The behaviour of what?

  13. 13
    rememberrinka says:

    And as Mr Alexander… his wife works in London, his kid goes to school in London and yet that is his second home so we get to pick up the tab rather than suporting a house in the highlands which might be a bit cheaper. And of course we pay for the brood to go to the holiday home (sorry main home)once a fortnight for the weekend.

    He is, of course, like Laws an honourable man, ec, etc, etc

  14. 14
    Michael says:

    How many office pot plants can you buy for £40k? How many people clamouring for Laws’ swift return were critical of Mandelson’s return to Government?

  15. 15
    paul says:

    Mmmm, lets just carry on giving all our tax dollars to rich bankers instead.

  16. 16
    Chill out Charlie says:

    Agree with you Guido. This smokescreen of implied media homophobia just goes to show that they still don’t get it.

  17. 17
    Martin Day says:

    David Laws needs to quit politics now.

    Even in Yeovil there are people who claim housing benefit, and local MP David Laws must have constituents who have been refused HB because South Somerset district council believed they have a “contrived tenancy” in which “their liability to pay rent has been created to take advantage of the HB scheme”. You can’t get HB if your landlord is a relative or a partner. Some of Mr Laws’s constituents may even have faced prosecution for fraud because they tried to do so. What’s the moral or legal difference?

  18. 18
    Grumpy Old Man says:

    In the cases of Mr. Dale and Mr. Pack. There is more than a hint of special pleading. The whole point about the Rule of Law is that laws are applied without fear or favour to all in the Country, regardless of station. Labour’s policy of Rule BY Laws, has resulted in a whole list of social engineering exemptions which favour special interest groups, by statute and by practical application, from the policy of Rule of Law. It is little wonder that the Law and it’s officers are generally held in contempt by large sections of the Public.

  19. 19
    Whistleblower says:

    Talking about sneaking David Laws back in, to prop up incompetent Chancellor, George Osborne. Incredible!

  20. 20
    Backwoodsman says:

    Unusually, not entirely sure I agree 100% with Fawkes (& the majority of you ) on this !
    It’s generally accepted that he has claimed less by this arrangement than he could have by other fully complient options.
    In real world terms, thats acceptable to me – it sticks in the throat a lot less than some nulab cocksucker like suzy leather creaming 100,000’s in quango fees.

  21. 21
    Grumpy Old Man says:

    Erm…. We pay taxes in Pounds Stirling. Are you sure you’re blogging in the right country?

  22. 22
    He's Spartacus says:

    History will view the public’s high-and-mighty moral hang-wringing and indignation over MPs’ expenses as another ‘Diana moment’.

    Politics of envy, of which the socialists are past masters. It’s created some unseemly bed-fellows.

    Tiny sums of money bother tiny envious minds.

    Regards,

    Tom

  23. 23
    dizzy says:

    “We should be harder on the misdemeanour’s of politicians”

    Said without a hint of sexual innuendo natch!

  24. 24
    Unsworth says:

    Agreed. The only question remains, who is fit to be an MP? There can’t be many in such a position if they’ve acquired the wealth and means. I have met very few in public life or business who I would describe as honourable or completely honest. As the whole expenses shambles shows, there are virtually none in the Commons or the Lords.

    Then there’s the whole quagmire of Quangos, let alone the huge Local Government cess-pool. What about Trade Unions, too?

    If we’re serious about this, let’s also scrutinise these other vile bodies – and make the same demands for standards of behaviour and probity.

  25. 25
    SarahN says:

    Well said, Guido. I’m sorry for Laws on a personal basis because of his ‘outing’, so to speak. But, people in public life have to realize that once you take a penny from the taxpayer, you have given up the right to privacy about how that money is spent.

  26. 26
  27. 27
    TonkaTom says:

    So just about every politician who was in the House of Commons last term is unfit for public service?

    Where do we go from here?

  28. 28
    anon, anon, anon..... says:

    More than 170 top civil servants receive bigger salaries than the Prime Minister, figures released today by the Cabinet Office disclosed.
    So……it follows PM must have a salary increase!

  29. 29
    Ted Bundy says:

    It’s starting to dawn on the public that Labour may be gone for the moment but political sleaze is still alive and well and things are continuing as normal. Nu Labour out Sleaze Coalition in (and milking the system quite nicely thank you very much). After all Cameron and Clegg both had dirty expense claims they’d rather everyone forget about. The way things are going with the coalition the Tony Blair years are beginning to look like the golden era of probity in British politics. Just imagine what the smells going to be like in a couple of years time if this ragbag outfit is still holding together in Government.

  30. 30
    White Van Driver says:

    David Laws is a greedy hoon.

    The former banker did not have to claim £40,000 of taxpayers’ cash for staying at his secret lover’s home and he certainly did not need to. Yet again, an intelligent politician has been brought down by foolish decisions.

    Mr Laws was free to guard his privacy – but not at our expense.

  31. 31
    Hoarce, Doris and Boris Norris says:

    Spot on, Guido.

  32. 32
    Budgie says:

    Yes, good original post, good comment. It is outrageous that politicians bend the laws that they make to avoid prosecution and to feather their nests. Look at Baroness Scotland, look at Prescott, look at all the mortgage flipping MPs – all of them should be in jail, like any member of the public would be.

  33. 33
    London Muslin says:

    Awww. You flotilla “activists” blow up so quickly these days.

  34. 34
    Can't remember my moniker says:

    Perhaps here? TaT alleged he would finally bow out last night. Of course, this may not be true in keeping with almost everything else he has pronounced upon. Just in case he is telling the truth this time, I should like to pay this tribute to him:

    He is the smegma in the prepucium of the knobhead politic.

  35. 35
    Suffolk Punch says:

    Agree with GF….
    1 thing that has angered me has been its the ‘homos’ pushing the homosexual side of this story.. Matthew Parris, Ian Dale et al……….
    The fella has admitted breaking the rules (law) also kept on breaking the rules after they were fully clarified to define ‘what a ‘partner’ is… Asfar as I can see, he has been given an easy ride by the press over this as well.. more lamenting the loss of a good and able politician for a role a politician was actually suited for…..

  36. 36
    lolol says:

    Mr Fawkes I agree with you,but you and I don’t count,they talk about prison being a school for thieves, the Palace of Westminster is the university,they then give their expenses to a quango to sort out and double the cost to the public,they would have been better to outsource to a big companies wages dept eg Vauxhall,Toyota they could do that sort of thing for a few thousand with their eyes shut but most of all it would come under the eyes of the HMRC,personally I would sack the lot, the laws are made by the EUSSR with makes them just overpaid county council councillors.

  37. 37
    Ed Balls (Leader of the Labour Party) says:

    Have to agree with your blog,Guido.

    On resigning, David Laws said: “How much I regret having to leave such vital work, which I feel all my life has prepared me for.” How odd that his relished life goal was to cast people out of work.

    I regret the manner of his fall, but not the departure of one who expressed little sympathy for the lives of others being damaged by a too harsh interpretation of economic necessity.

  38. 38
    Nick2 says:

    So are you a Somali pirate?

  39. 39
    Lord Bumwatch of Bumbledon says:

    I agree!
    Should the poor boys go inside, pay a fine or 200 hours of public service?

  40. 40
    I am Sick says:

    When I last looked, there were no benefits claimants capable of making laws that we all must live by. When in a position of trust and power, you should be and act in a manner, that is beyond reproach. Law’s was not, worse still, his successor looks to be equally flawed. Cameron has to bring this all to an end, or his government will fall.
    People have simply had enough of politicians systemic greed and theft.

  41. 41
    Anonymous says:

    fuck, Guido’s getting like Polly Tobenee turning this into a witch hunt shes a twat Guido not.

  42. 42
    David Chappell says:

    Does this make Law’s boyfriend a rent boy?

  43. 43
    Grumpy Old Man says:

    Dear Martin. For the last 13 years, institutionalised hypocrisy well mixed with corruption was the lubricant of Labour’s choice to keep the wheels political life turning. The change to probity, openness and accountability.will take some time. I very much doubt whether Jacqui Smith, Hazel Blears or indeed the duck house owner would meet the same standards of public conduct as Mr Laws has just done.

  44. 44
    Unsworth says:

    Define ‘too harsh’.

  45. 45
    Play For Today says:

    Scene 1. The House of Commons, some time in 2006.

    Outlaws: (thinking to himself) Hmmmm, so MPs can’t claim expenses to pay for accommodation provided by a partner any more? No problem. I’ll just carry on pretending Jamie and I are landlord and lodger. Candy from a baby!

    Scene 2. London, September 2009.

    Outlaws: So the expenses fuss has died down now. Looks like nothing more will come out with the election due soon, and if there are any more revelations afterwards, they’ll all be about Ministers in the new Government or high ups in the Opposition. Nothing for me to worry about then. They’ll never dig up my old claims. It’s another five years on the gravy train for me, swanning around with the other Lib Dems.

    Scene 3. The Treasury, Friday 28th May 2010.

    Outlaws: F***ing Telegraph.

    Treasury Spin Doctor: Hmmmm. Urgent need for damage limitation – use the sympathy line. Tell them the only reason you were falsely claiming accommodation expenses is because you are a poor sad homosexual, trying to protect yourself from those nasty, horrible people who don’t like poofs. Nothing to do with being a lying, thieving, deceptive politician at all. That should do it.

    Scene 4. 10 Downing Street, the next day.

    David Cameron: (reading back a letter he has just written) “You are a completely honourable man. And anyway, as you are not making the fraudulent claims any more, you can expect to be back in government again soon when the fuss has died down”.

    Scene 5. A Nice Pile in the Country, Sunday 30th May

    Outlaws: Hello mum. Er, I’m afraid I have a bit of a problem with telling the truth, and I’ve been playing some very funny games with other boys….

    Scene 6. The near future.

    David Cameron: (reading back a letter he has just written) “A vacancy has just arisen in the Treasury, and I believe you are the ideal candidate for the job”.

  46. 46
    Damian McBride says:

    Wonder if James Lundie declared the monthly rental income from his “tenant” on his Tax Return ?

  47. 47
    Budgie says:

    “the Tony Blair years are beginning to look like the golden era of probity”

    When did they let you out of the asylum?

  48. 48
    Unsworth says:

    Maybe you should include the Ratepayer, too.

  49. 49
    Anonymous says:

    Direct hit from Guido.

    Like to see how far a couple, oops a not-a-couple, of JSA claimants would get with this ‘I’m only concerned with my privacy, we’re not really a couple, we just happen to sleep together in the same accommodation every night’ bollocks.

  50. 50
    Mandy says:

    That’s for me to decide – and if I like him

  51. 51
    SarahN says:

    Indeed, I meant anyone who has to contribute to the slush fund, sorry, Treasury/Town Hall.

  52. 52
    I am Sick says:

    Ed, you are an idiot. Is enslaving your children and grandchildren into a life of debt, so that some paperclip counter or diversity awareness co-ordinator, can live high on the taxpayers hog, the right thing to do? Or is living within your means preferable?

  53. 53
    Everard P Burgerpenis says:

    Pounds Stirling ? You mean Scottish pound notes ?

  54. 54
    Budgie says:

    It is not “high-and-mighty moral hang-wringing”, it is sauce for the gander. It is not “Tiny sums of money” that bother us, it is the principle whereby we get a criminal record but they get off scot free.

  55. 55
    On Harman Pride's Dossier says:

    It’s a point of principle, and the “spirit of the law.” So in this case, the relative value of the transaction is irrelevant, it’s the recipient.

    If, like a lot of MPs, he had been paying £1,500 per month to a genuine private landlord for a small London flat, that would have been fine. Instead, he’s been, effectively, paying his lover to let him shack up at the lover’s gaff. The amount of money doesn’t matter.

    If, like everyone else in the country, they had to pay this through earned income, of course, the problem would go away.

  56. 56
    Anonymous says:

    If in the 1970’s a ship full of NORAID sponsored thugs wanted to berth at Belfast do you think the RN would’ve let it dock?

  57. 57
    Anonymous says:

    Sterling.

  58. 58
    Southern Softy says:

    So it’s ok if I break into your house and steal everything except your telly. As it could have been worse, that makes it acceptable. Theft is theft and thieves should be prosecuted and punished.

  59. 59
    Sarf of the River says:

    I’ve come over all Pet Shop Boys – “I love him, he pays my rent”

  60. 60
    Can't remember my moniker says:

    Spot on, Budgie. The notion of principle has been all but forgotten within the last decade or so.

  61. 61
    Ed Balls (Leader of the Labour Party) says:

    This mornings opening of the FTSE sums up the City’s view of this coalition
    FTSE 100 5082.64down -105.79 -2.04%

    Keep it under your hat,but we have a “double dip” recession on the way

  62. 62
    Grumpy Old Man says:

    Dear Tosser.
    “How odd that his relished life goal was to cast people out of work.” Plagiarizing Polly? How low you have sunk.

    Mr Laws was not casting people out of work. That have already been accomplished by Labour, who realised their life goals by allowing the wealth-creating private sector to wither away and using pointless legislation to create non-jobs such as HIPS surveyors and diversity officers, then printing money a la the Wiemar republic to hide their villainous incompetence. I can have little sympathy with one who even now continues to delude himself that putting 2 future generations into debt is a viable way of running the UK’s finances.

  63. 63
    Lizzie says:

    Strange world politics. We elect ordinary people to do the most important tasks on our behalf, ie: a ex-postman became Home Secretary!
    Just like us politians are human beings, like most people they will “push the envelope” on most things. Politians have power, they control how this country is run, some poor soandso has to run this country. I agree if any politian has actually stolen money with intent, jail them. But the system was so inept that it was hard not to break the rules. But I for one am sick of all this politians should be holier than thou just because they are in public service. Let’s get on with our lives, the country is in deep dodo, there are very important decisions to be made and public pain to come, lets just get on with it, where is our “Dunkirk” spirit, this conversation is quite pathetic!

  64. 64
    Anonymous says:

    Well said Guido. Spot on. These people are law makers, they tell everyone what they may or may not do, when they should go to the toilet and how they should wipe their arse. OK, the last two they haven’t done (yet). Because he is homosexual, and for no other reason, Laws is now the nearest thing to a saint. Our state broadcaster is in deep mourning and all are describing him as a much-put-upon victim. What a load of balls-aching crap. Perhaps the Pope might bless him when he comes over later this year. After all he knows all about criminal queers.

  65. 65
    Anonymouse says:

    GF, Lets go a little further, £950 a month for a room plus additional expenses for utilities seems an awful lot. We know that he lent his landlord money to buy a bigger house, could this be paying for the mortgage?

    One law for them and one law for us.

  66. 66
    Mr Plum says:

    If he wanted privacy then why did he claim any money at all, by all accounts he did not need it.
    I suppose he did not expect to be in such a high profile job also not too sure whether he deserved the Cable like rise to stardom before he actually did anything worthwhile

  67. 67
    Can't remember my moniker says:

    “I think most people who have dealt with me think I am a pretty straight sort of guy, and I am.”

    Said it himself so it must be true.

  68. 68
    Sir William Waad says:

    It’s more complicated than that. You get mostly genuine aid in these shipments with some weapons and explosives mixed in. It depends whose side you’re on.

  69. 69
    Can't remember my moniker says:

    “It will be a government that seeks to restore trust in politics in this country.”

  70. 70
    Can't remember my moniker says:

    “We are not the master now. The people are the masters. We are the servants of the people. We will never forget that.”

    Etc., etc. ………

  71. 71
    Voice of Reason says:

    Oh for fuck’s sake leave the guy alone, surely he’s suffered enough. This continual hounding of a person just reflects what prissy minds most of you bear baiting types have. It would be revealing to know the amount of your errors and crimes you’ve accrued throughout your miserable little lives.

  72. 72
    Sir William Waad says:

    A friend of mine had his internal accountant steal about £40,000 from his business by means of book-keeping sleight-of-hand. They only found out when she was going on maternity leave and her temporary replacement realised what had been going on. She was sent to prison for eighteen months. Quite right of course, but it makes me sad to think of it.

    It’s different if you’re a bigwig like Mr Laws. Criminal justice is a net through which the big fish swim without difficulty but the smaller fish are caught.

  73. 73
    Andy L says:

    That’s a key question, why did he claim any money at all?

    One answer is that he was legitimately claiming for rent under the old rules – at first because there was no relationship and then because paying rent to partners was not banned until 2006 or so.

    So, he would have had to formally stop claiming, which would undoubtedly have raised questions about why he was not longer claiming anything – in effect he would have outed himself by stopping claiming.

    I don’t think exonerates him, but it explains how he got into the mess he was in, and for me why this is not such a crime as others (e.g. J Smith or Baroness Scotland)

  74. 74
    Life's quite cosy in Jail says:

    Doh!

    That’s like saying that if I rob a shop of £10,000 but leave £5,000 in the till it somehow makes the crime not a crime or stealing acceptable behaviour.

    Get real!

  75. 75
    This voice of reason says:

    Nah

  76. 76
    Head Lizard says:

    The laws for Laws and all his kind

  77. 77
    pp says:

    It doesn’t matter how wrong it is (or you thin kit is) – that it is wrong at all means that it should be punished, not swept under the carpet.

  78. 78
    Sassenach says:

    He meant real money not the toy stuff!

  79. 79
    Anonymous says:

    mrs dale has never gotten it

  80. 80
    Stevie says:

    Arse!
    Nothing to do with BP and the Gulf of Mexico.
    Nothing to do with Israel and the embargo of Gaza bubbling over.
    Nothing to do with the ongoing crisis on the Korean peninsular.
    Nothing to do with the PIGS and the Euro

  81. 81
    Michael68000 says:

    I suppose it’s understandable that David Laws would wish to keep the sordid secret from his strict religious parents, that he was in fact a Liberal Democrat MP.

  82. 82
    Representation of the People Act 1983 says:

    Tory candidate held in police probe on election fraud

    A Tory election candidate has been arrested on suspicion of postal vote fraud in the first West Midlands Police operation of its kind linked to the 2010 polls.

    Gulfam Wali was held by detectives probing claims that postal votes in the Walsall ward where he stood for election were inappropriately used.

    The 32-year-old, of Neale Street, Birchills, Walsall, who failed to get elected in Pleck ward, was arrested by detectives from West Midlands Police’s specialist economic crime team.

    http://www.expressandstar.com/news/2010/05/26/tory-candidate-held-in-police-probe-on-election-fraud/

  83. 83
    Anonymous says:

    Who in their right mind would pursue politics as a career now? If you think that Laws crime is so awful – when all he essentially did was save the taxpayer money, then why would anyone with a brain bother. You could make double an MPs salary in a cushy HR job where nobody notices you’re stealing every paper-clip in sight. Laws could have stayed in banking and made 10 times the salary, and the bonuses and done any damn thing he wanted. You’re living in a dream world GF.

    And this ludicrous separation of public and private money is a joke. Since vast swathes of public money are spent on private contractors, should we see the expense accounts of Jarvis and all the rest as well? Theoretically yes, but if every public sector workers pay and expenses, and every private contractors, was published, we’d soon see where the worst fiddles of our money were going.

    Presumably you’ll also agree with the great Daily Mail story today, showing that Danny Alexander claimed expenses for visiting his constituency… shock horror…

  84. 84
    From the particular to the general says:

    All the stock indices are down…DAX, CAC, DOW JONES, etc.

    All down circa 2%.

    Not Britain’s local difficulty.

    When the Markets turn on Britain, we’ll notice it then.

  85. 85
    Lord Blair of Stockwell says:

    I am the law.

    Well I used to be, but if I’m honest I was never very good at it.

  86. 86
    Kim Philby says:

    I’m a civil servant. I am required to pass security vetting for my personal and financial affairs, I am required to open up the family finances, discuss ex-partners and accept that anyone from my past could be approached and asked by my department about me. I am continuously monitored, I have no issue with this. If WE fail any aspect, WE are ‘case managed’, bollocked, humiliated and, if it’s serious, ‘managed’ out and down the road having been warned to within an inch of OUR lives about the OSA.

    Unlike any politician.

  87. 87
    Laddie says:

    or having his cake and, er, eating it. Surely the concern here is the possibility of compromise with a lobbyist.

  88. 88
    Furry Friend says:

    No, just a pet!

  89. 89
    Martinus Scriblerus says:

    Laws are like cobwebs, which may catch small flies, but let wasps and hornets break through.

    Jonathan Swift

  90. 90
    Smig says:

    Don’t you have a GCSE this morning Martin?

  91. 91
    Peasant says:

    Once in a while Guido writes a piece that makes sense. Well done. Now I have a long wait for the next sensible piece.

  92. 92
    Anonymous says:

    Is Mark Pack a gayer too?

  93. 93
    Nick2 says:

    Good. Let all of the fraudsters swing, irrespective of party affiliation.

  94. 94
    James Lundie says:

    I also charged the VAT for services received and delivered.

    Should I declare that as well?

  95. 95
    Smig says:

    Profiteering from the uptick from 4950 to 5200 last week.

  96. 96
    AJ says:

    He was (1) dishonest, and (2) tried to use his sexuality as a ‘get out of jail card’. Further, it was fantasy to suppose he could stay, given what Cameron had said about expenses, and what his job invovled.

  97. 97
    Boris says:

    Come on they were singing we’re Kamkazi pilots out to whack the jews.They planned it from the off,it was to try and break the blockade.One said on film.There’s two good ways this can end. We get through to Gaza or we become martyrs ,the very thing all suicide bombers have in mind when they set out to wipe out the innocent to make a point to the government.The Isarael’s were lenient with them.

  98. 98
    Apagusta says:

    spot on Sir William…given that Laws probably didn’t think the liberals would end up in such a pivotal position and himself thus elevated…he thought he could stay under the radar but for someone who is already wealthy, experienced in the real world and concerned to conceal his sexuality, he might have been wiser to pay the rent out of taxed income thereby his excuse to be concerned to keep his sexuality private argument would be more credible and he would still have his job at which he would appear to have had real ability. The things powerful men do to conceal such things really doesn’t square with their apparent intelligence.

  99. 99
    Mr Ned says:

    I agree that in a Parliament that is clean, any indiscretion must be punished. This is what we expect of a clean, “whiter than white” system. Laws was right to resign in that regard.

    However, I do have sympathy for the argument that he has done NOTHING at all that deserves a resignation whilst in Government. This was something that happened before the last election when a clear majority of MPs were screwing the system and many of them for far more than Laws did, and many of those were ministers who retained their jobs and for whom resignation did not even begin to speculate about becoming the merest possibility of entering their tiny minds.

    Laws did nothing in government that justified his resignation. None of the current coalition have done anything, since being in Government, that justifies a resignation.

    Are we going to continue to hound the MPs for what we know they did, under different rules, prior to the election? If that’s the case then we need another election, because there are still MPs in the commons who screwed the system.

    Or do we start to apply the expectation of the highest standards of moral and ethical behaviour from when this Government started and then rightly hold to account those who fail the new standards?

  100. 100
    Anonymous says:

    As a benefit’s officer in the JobCentre I can tell you that we would, without doubt, class David Laws’ bit on the side as a “partner” for benefits purposes.

    Should be no different with troughers.

  101. 101
    THE THIRD ROUNDEL says:

    Guido is spot on. The fundamental issue of fraud overrides all other factors. Yet the party leaders still talk of honourable men of integrity. Honourable men of integrity do not behave in this way. Cameron in particular is apalling on this point. Even with his own abusing backbenchers the `spin` and the language is of toughness. Look at the facts and look at the selected backbenchers he has so desparately tried to protect – many of them `black and white` cases of blatant corruption. This latest incident destroys the myth of `new politics` and exposes Cameron`s double standards.

  102. 102
    I am Sick says:

    Gulfam Wali, bringing vibrant change and diversity, to the fuddy duddy world of electoral democracy. Why am I not surprised, at all?

  103. 103
    New Labour is dead! says:

    Just because David Laws is a politican with merits doesn’t let him abuse the public money. Politics must be cleaned up. The Fraudsters must be punished. Some will be total Hunts, the others just misguided. But hopefully we will end up with politicians the public can trust.

  104. 104
    Vicar of Dibley says:

    And next week’s sermon shall be about casting stones and glasshouses!

  105. 105
    Maximus says:

    One can see now why there is a cult of the Dalai Lama. Not that I would support such a solution.

  106. 106
    Nick2 says:

    Punitive amputation…

  107. 107
    stilyagi_air_corps says:

    Liar – John Prescott never bought me a gin and tonic, and I’m a Person!

  108. 108
    Captain Mainwaring says:

    I was an insurgent.

  109. 109
    New Labour is dead! says:

    Nick Clegg’s boasts that the Lib Dems were whiter than white on expenses now look hollow.

  110. 110
    cant hunter says:

    This homosexuality is a funny old game, and very disconcerting in politics .I remember twenty odd years ago when Norman Fowler became health secretary and had to deal with the AIDS issue, his civil servants took him aside and whispered in his ear how gay men were especially liable to contract AIDS by their penetrative practices. Our Norman, a Brummie who in spite of Cambridge had lived a blameless somewhat sheltered life, merely gasped ” Blimey !” before coming over all faint.

  111. 111
    Leather Apron says:

    No, we should treat them harder and harsher than a benefits cheat – we do not and should not have one law for one and one law for another.

    They should all be treated equally toughly. A benefits cheat is stealing the same money as an expenses fiddler.

  112. 112
    New Labour is dead! says:

    Who would pursue politics for a living now?

    Those of us who earn less than £63,000, pay our taxes on time and know how to fill out an expenses form correctly. Just because our politic class are thieves doesn’t mean that there are millions of people less light-fingered with public money who are able to take their place.

  113. 113
    Michael Read says:

    You’re on the money, Guido.

    I note even the saintly Mike Smithson at PB was playing the queer card as soon as the story broke.

  114. 114
    Lord Mandelson says:

    I’m only in it for the public service.

    Oh, yes.

  115. 115
    Anonymous says:

    why is it always asians under investigation for this?

  116. 116
    Menedemus says:

    One wonders if the words of comfort and sympathy directed towards David Laws would have been less apologetic had he not been instrumental in enegineering the Coalition and had not been a Liberal Democrat MP who’s numbers in Parliament are critical to the Conservatives remaining in government?

    It all smacks of the new Parliament being as arrogant as the last when it comes to snouts in the trough and that expediency rules over doing right by the electorate who clearly did not vote for the abuses of parliamentary expenses to continue.

  117. 117
    Head Lizard says:

    Agree with you. But this was a time of major public attention on MP’s and what they pocket.To have dismissed it with it’s just paperclips would not have gone down well with the great British fiddler er public.We all know life is a grey area but it stands now as it always has that the maxim is don’t get caught. If you do take it and bow out,which Laws ,eventually did.There is no reason why he should not come back and if he reads Guido I would say to him …Hold onto your seat it’s not over yet.

  118. 118
    east of Munich says:

    O/T
    anybody got any idea where snot-gobbler is hiding out?

  119. 119
    Mr Ned says:

    The only money to bear the word “Sterling” is the Scottish banknotes. The English notes do not say “Sterling” anywhere on them.

  120. 120
    Father Abraham says:

    I thought the Eurovision song contest was a fix but no mention of that hey Guido.

  121. 121
    Head Lizard says:

    Some aspects of his decisions were probably ruled more by heart then mind

  122. 122
    Fair minded says:

    Well said, Guido!

    I wouldn’t fancy my chances arguing ‘but it was within our internal rules’ if HM Revenue & Customs challenged company ‘expenses’ we’d paid that were not ‘exclusively’ for work purposes.

    Mr Laws has merely repaid the stolen money. Ordinary folk would have to pay a surcharge plus accrued interest.

  123. 123
    OldRockape says:

    Nothing has changed we have just changed one lot of Crooks and Shirtlifters for another.

  124. 124
    I TOLD YOU SO says:

    What Cameron `said` about the ex[enses scandal is irrelevant, it is what he `did` that counts, and it is this that exposes his hypocrisy. Just look at this entanglements with the disgraceful Julie Kirkbride as an illustration of this point.

  125. 125
    Maggies Drawers says:

    The only way Tat will bow out is if his mumsy will reinstate his World of Warcraft account.

    Jeez, I’d pay it myself if the maggot could be trusted to go.

  126. 126
    New Labour is dead! says:

    72% of people polled thought it was right for Laws to resign. The public are still fuming about the money the politicians stole. If they can’t see that then public life is not for them.

    http://ukpollingreport.co.uk/blog/archives/2712?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+PollingReport+%28UK+Polling+Report%29

  127. 127
    Maggies Drawers says:

    Bet Ed Balls’ sphincter is beginning to twitch 9,000 beats per minute.

  128. 128
    Phil Bristol says:

    My objection is why didn’t the Telegraph bring this out earlier? It would have been sorted by now and perhaps we might still have the best man for the job in the job. If the DT are just going to pick off the coalition one by one to further sales perhaps they might consider how this plays with their core readership.

  129. 129
    Rinka says:

    HHHHhhhhhhrrrnnn! HHHhhhhrrrrnnn! (twitch) (bleed)

  130. 130
    Anonymous says:

    Laws arse is like Cherie Blair\’s mouth – a stinking gaping shit hole.

  131. 131
    Maggies Drawers says:

    NORAID used Gadaffi to supply “aid” to NI.

  132. 132
    Cun't Remember I'm a tourist monglicker who doesn't even live in Britain says:

    it could be worse
    he could be a tourist twat who doesn’t even live here spouting off about things he knows nothing about, like you

    or he could be a lickspittle Piggy apologist shill, like you

    he’s still a twat with a revolting Esther fetish, but not as big a twat as the complete fuckwits who kept sticking up for the expenses pig Laws, like you

    so piss off back to gooberland twat

  133. 133
    Cape Cod chutney ferret says:

    Cape Cod.

  134. 134
    This voice of reason says:

    His accountancy is in the court of public opinion,,he carried on with what appears to be fraud,considering he is in a place full of lawyers and accountants and I presume he has money in his own right,he could have had some expert help on checking that his expenses were correct,I would have thought he would have done this as soon as the Telegraph kicked off last year,he didn’t he got caught,he confessed he was a naughty boy,he “retired” from high public life to be a normal mp,personally I would love to see all mp’s who’s expenses are questionable explain their decisions in a court of law but as their defence is “it was within the rules” then they will have to get used to getting a public lambasting

  135. 135
    Voice of Reason says:

    Why, what are you going to do about it?

  136. 136
    Maggies Drawers says:

    A homosexual would never be elected Prime Minister.

    Or would he? mmm

  137. 137
    Alf Garnett says:

    Probably it’s a case of them sticking together.

  138. 138
    Anonymous says:

    Fair point; well made.

  139. 139
    Frodo Gawkes says:

    you really are a vicious little bastard McBride

  140. 140
    Alf Garnett says:

    Probably because they are the ones who perpetrate electoral fraud the most!

  141. 141
    Voice of Reason says:

    Very erudite. Where did you get such an education old fruit.

  142. 142
    Maggies Drawers says:

    Laws didn’t claim Housing Benefit. Next question?

  143. 143
    Jim Hawkins says:

    Because Asian society mostly works on the basis of corruption, favours. obligations and haggling. Everything can be fixed in some way or other. Just look at everyday life in India and Pakistan. Mass immigration has imported a lot of very un-British business practices into the UK and the political system has made little effort to deal with it, partly because such corruption has generally favoured Labour over the last 12 years and partly for fear of being labelled racist by the liberal race lobby and associated vested interests.

  144. 144
    Greg_L-W. says:

    Hi,

    I do NOT see it as a perk of perversion that the tax payer should pay for your sex!

    The man was and is unfit for public office, unfit for public service and unfit for access to money HE STEALS IT giving very plausible excuses when caught – well he would wouldn’t he is a politician.

    If it puts Mrs. dale’s Diary off of Politics that is clearly no loss as no onbe wanted him as shown by the selections he has hawked himself around and not so much as a sniff at being wanted as a PPC.

    It is time to up the caliber ready to reclaim our Sovereignty, Independence and the fundamental human right of self determination.

    We need men of caliber and gravitas not gossips!

    We have had 13 unlucky years of economic illiteracy and sociopathic incompetence and moral incontenance.

    We need crooks like David Laws in Government like we need the plague!

    regards,
    Greg_L-W.

  145. 145
    Maximus says:

    Let’s remind ourselves that it was nu liebore that dispensed with the practise of civil servants taking minutes of cosy little meetings with big implications between ministers and corporatists.

  146. 146
    Cobbler says:

    my God her arse must be a horrible place

  147. 147
    Watch the little Piglets Dancing for their Piggy Masters says:

    Dance little piggies dance!

    Hahahahahahahahahahahaha!!!

    These stupid cun’ts have no fucking shame or even the rudimentary self awareness that would tip these hypocrites off that if it was a Labour piggy who did this they would be screaming their heads off for his blood.

    Keep the comedy coming little hypocrite piglets.

  148. 148
    Scottish meeja says:

    We don’t care what British Establishment types do, we only abuse the SNP

    No Daily Telegraph dirt on them is there……. Anybody?

    Please. We’re desperate.

  149. 149
    Jim Hawkins says:

    Arms shipments went to the Irish Republic, not Northern Ireland. Ultimately it was down to the Garda to deal with them. Or not in many cases. So should the UK have blockaded the Irish coast? How would the Irish have reacted to that?

  150. 150
    Anonymous says:

    Andrew MacKay has been playing tennis with Caroline Spelman. That`s an interesting little hinterland story for the DT to investigate.

  151. 151
    I am Sick says:

    Double dip was always on the cards, because Labour refused to do the right thing and cut spending, when the books did not add up. Instead they, in typically cowardly fashion, decided to leave the clear up until after the election and lie to anyone who would listen that they had managed the way out of the worst of it. Trouble is, that was a fantasy insice McDoom’s head. All the imbecile was doing, was making the recovery twice as painful and twice as long as was originally needed. What will come, is a direct result of the “so what” mentality, epitomised by Labour when in office. Shit on the carpet and then leave it for someone else to clear up, socialist parasites forte.

  152. 152
    Cobbler says:

    I like the cut of your jib

  153. 153
    Grumpy Old Man says:

    ““the Tony Blair years are beginning to look like the golden era of probity”

    Law’s expenses relate to the years 2001-08. Troughing expense claims being orgasmed over in the MSM are all pre-2010. Hattie and Gorbals Mick have a lot of explaining to do.

  154. 154
    Watch the little Piglets Dancing for their Piggy Masters says:

    Dance little piggy! Dance for your rentboy paying taxpayer thieving friend.
    Can you dance well enough to pay back the £40,000 he stole ?
    Then shut the fuck up you senile old piggy apologist shill.

  155. 155
    Maggies Drawers says:

    But do they get second homes allowance? Can they start wars in far off places? Can they build up multi-million pounds property empires? Can they go on the international lecture circuit after a few years in office? Can they ring down to the kitchen at unearthly hours and demand a club sandwich, fries and two bottles of budweiser fucking pronto!.

    No Prime Minister, they cannot.

    You gotta compare apples with apples old bean.

  156. 156
    Watch the little Piglets Dancing for their Piggy Masters says:

    The poor poor little piggy thieves!
    Boo Hoo fucking Hoo.
    You would be shitting yourself with joy and screaming for him to be jailed if it was a Labour piggy you hypocritical twat.
    Guido is correct.
    You’re full of shit like all the piggy apologist shills here.

  157. 157
    I am Sick says:

    Laws is a multi millionaire.

  158. 158
    Maggies Drawers says:

    No, just another HP saucy catamite.

  159. 159
    Alf Garnett says:

    I don’ t suppose for one moment that anything much has changed in Parliament since the shit hit the fan last year. These trifling oversights of ten of thousands of quid will continue to come to light.

    Plainly Cameron, Clegg et al regard the whole thing with complete insouciance, otherwise they would have gone through their troops with a fine tooth comb to make sure that the various skeletons in the cupboards were properly sorted out.

    The whole notion that any of these people are in it for anything but their own personal financial gain and benefit is laughable. In my neck of the woods we’ve just elected Widdecombe Mark 2 in place of the apostate Gummer. This female elephant, by name Coffey, has been scouring the British Isles for a shoo-in seat – any old seat – so that she can have her zookeepers give her buns. I hope that a mouse runs up her trunk.

    I know all about this, because my granddaughter married some twat called Blair!

  160. 160
    Maggies Drawers says:

    Most school janitors are. Fucking sadists thelorrathem!

  161. 161
    Matthew Parris says:

    That’s right. Plus – if Laws had done nothing wrong why is he repaying the ‘honestly sourced’ money?

  162. 162
    Ridsdale says:

    The £40,000 was really just for services rendered – practical advice on two methods of entering the body politic, perhaps?

  163. 163
    Mr Ned says:

    “you can’t get HB if your landlord is a relative or a partner.”

    You can if the landlord can demonstrate that the property is and was advertised in the open market and was genuinely available to anyone to rent, and that the relative is renting on an open commercial and non favourable basis.

    When I was made redundant many years ago I had to vacate a property down south and returned home to my home town. My Father had died and my Mother moved out of the family home and tried to sell it. It was on the market for 6 months. This was during the 1991-1992 downturn. Luckily for me the house did not sell and I was able to rent it. We gave the council and the benefit office all the proofs of this being a genuine commercial arrangement at market rates and this was all OK’d and I could legitimately claim HB until I got another job, and then I took out a mortgage and bought the property from my Mother.

  164. 164
    John Redwood says:

    shameful!

  165. 165
    William Hague says:

    a disgrace!

  166. 166
  167. 167
    George Osborne says:

    beneath contempt

  168. 168
    Smig says:

    Damian, leave the computer alone. It’s half-term. The bogs have to repainted before the kids come back.

  169. 169
    lolol says:

    Life is full of what if’s,what has happened is now the past,if you hang on another mp/ppc of his calibre with an even better CV and PR will be along to suck public service and taxpayers pockets dry.

  170. 170
    I am Sick says:

    Whiter than white? Did he borrow that from the infamous Bliar puppet?

  171. 171
    Shark says:

    maybe he was living with a money grabbing bitch,ever had that?

  172. 172
    Maggies Drawers says:

    Comprehensive

  173. 173
    BBC Jockland says:

    We ran out years ago.

    Not that we had much to work with anyway.

  174. 174
    Maggies Drawers says:

    No World of Warcraft for you my lad!

  175. 175
    The Heir to Blair is in Despair at his Liberal chums Gay money affair says:

    that must be why Dave tries so hard to copy Blair

  176. 176
    Phil Bristol says:

    My point was that we have bigger problems to sort and if the DT has any more dirt it should have brought it out earlier not wait like a media whore to squeeze circulation benefit to the detriment of the country.

  177. 177
    Number 10's cat says:

    Whaaaaaat!
    HMRC charge VAT on semen now??

  178. 178
    Moshe says:

    They tracked them and boarded them in international waters. Much as the Israelis just did.

  179. 179
    TaT's Drawers says:

    Fuck off TaT you imbecile

  180. 180
    Beggar says:

    I make about 600 a week off the tax payer.

  181. 181
    Billy says:

    Fuck off tat with the little piggies routine. It’s boring and extremely childish. How old are you? 14?

  182. 182
    Piggy apologists are cun'ts says:

    getting rid of a sleazy expenses thief is a benefit to the country

  183. 183
    Willofthepeople says:

    He may have made a mistake and he is going to pay a heavy price for it, but it is the first time that I can remember that a politician has done the decent thing without the usual weeks of trying to riggle of the hook. The last one who did the decent thing was Lord Carrington after the fucked up start of the Falklands war.
    if as I hope Mr Laws can rehabilitate himself quickly after a suitable time on the back bach he should be back on the field playing a blinder for the country.
    There are to many shithouses in politics so it is refreshing to se a man of honour fall on his sword in a very pratrician way. The fact he is gay is totally irrelevant

  184. 184
    David Chappell says:

    As in “his heart was in my mouth”.

  185. 185
    Maggies Drawers says:

    That brought you out from under your rock titfer.

    Thought you were going you snivelling coward?

  186. 186
    Piggy apologists are cun'ts says:

    It’s not the twat TaT so fuck off

    Keep dancing for out amusement you shameless little piglet

  187. 187
    Can't remember my moniker says:

    They also wait who only stand unserved.

  188. 188
    Piggy apologists are twats says:

    Oink! Oink! little piglet

  189. 189
    Mombus says:

    The fucking tats back

  190. 190
    Phil Bristol says:

    And a benefit to the DT….it thinks. It is is definitely one regular reader down!

  191. 191
    Maggies Drawers Sniffer says:

    OInk! Oink! little piggy shill

    now fuck off back to Gooberland tourist

  192. 192
    50 Calibre says:

    Linking ‘protecting sexuality’ with knowingly claiming taxpayer’s money to the tune of £40k when it was clearly wrong doesn’t equate to any sort of a justification. It’s on the same level as that dreadful Sarah Ferguson’s defence for trying to flog access to he ex for £500k and that’s not cutting the mustard.

    Laws may be a bright spark, but he’s also an idiot if he thinks his excuse will do. He deserves whatever comes out of all this, as does the soon to be ex-duchess.

  193. 193
    Maggies Drawers says:

    The little twat never left.

  194. 194
    then you pay his rentboy £40,000 says:

    Oink Oink little piglet

  195. 195
    Spanner says:

    what if his partner is a blackmailer?

  196. 196
    50 Calibre says:

    Don’t ask…

  197. 197
    Maggies Drawers says:

    Make me, maggot.

  198. 198
    Spanner says:

    Eleanor gee you got it wrong,thats a dead link

  199. 199
    Spanner says:

    thought you left yesterday

  200. 200
    lolol says:

    The DT bought the source of the dirt namely the mp’s expenses disk,they are looking after their business if it means more money by dribbling out what they know then so be it,they also pay tax on what they produce,the country has lost it’s way and deserves what it is getting and what is due,we have all played our part,the non voters,the voters,left,right,middle and we have left the politcian’s to do what they fancy,I put it down to being busy with getting on with our lives and family etc,the politician’s being people of the greasy pole have used the chance to pilfer from the public and bring in laws bought and paid for by companies to aid the companies pockets,as they say it will all will end in tears,possibly with a lampost and piano wire involved just don’t know.

  201. 201
    julian says:

    Lotteries instead of elections that are so often bought.
    The average housewife, struggling to raise a family
    on £200 per week is just as qualified to run the country
    as a Lawyer, PPE grad, or some creep who has spent a
    life time ambitiously and ruthlessly seeking power.

  202. 202
    terrorist enabling state says:

    No, but they simply came ashore in the IRA supporting Republic of Ireland.

  203. 203
    Anonymous says:

    What a surprise, one of our ethnics enriching us… Once again…

  204. 204
    Number 10's cat says:

    AljaBeeba are caught on the horns of a dilemma, should they attack Laws because he’s not a “brother socialist”, or defend him as a fellow homosexual.

  205. 205
    Maggies Drawer Sniffer says:

    Fuck off tourist piggy

    nobody cares about your little ‘maggot’ so put it back in it’s mouse hole before you get arrested again

  206. 206
    Maggies Drawer Sniffer says:

    SQUEAL PIGGIES SQUEAL!!

    Hahahahahahaha

  207. 207
    The Court of Public Opinion says:

    I care not a jot he’s a friend of dorothy – fuck knows we had enough of them with liebour to make it almost the norm – it’s the fact that once again a millionaire MP is pretending to help the public whilst troughing from them behind their back. All the way through the corruption scandal too! He must have thought he’d got away with it. I wonder if there are any more cockroaches about to receive the unwelcome glare of sunlight into their grubby affairs?

  208. 208
    Marchamont says:

    and the cash Laws gave him to help buy the house.

  209. 209
    The Archbishop of Canterbury says:

    Why do poofs stick together?

    Is it because they are covered in spunk?

  210. 210
    Maggies Drawer Sniffer says:

    poor widdle piggy

  211. 211
    Trev says:

    Laws did not cost the taxpayer a penny and in fact saved it money and did not profit from anything. A pimple set against a mountain of corruption.

    There is no comparison with for instance Jacqui Smith, or Blears who is now so fragrant that she can be employed by the BBC.

    Meantime the forces that are opposed to cutting the deficit gather and the power trying to eradicate it is weakened.

    But what loyalty does Mr Fawkes hold for this country? Why should he care.

  212. 212
    HappyUk says:

    Any road, good on Cameron for ousting him, the shameless fuck. Iain Dale can mince all he likes, being good at your job is no excuse for robbing the public.

  213. 213
    Ian E says:

    And look who Cameron has parachuted into Laws’ vacant slot!

  214. 214
    restandbthankfull says:

    Exactly my sentiments when I read about the “transparency” of salaries. BBC should be next since all their salaries are paid for by taxpayers.

    O/T but I was surprised when watching the Chelsea flower show to hear Alan Titchmarsh (sp) mentioning time and time again M&G Investments the sponsors of the flower show. I thought the BBC didn’t advertise.

  215. 215
    Spanner says:

    Is this a spat with Mrs dale and Guido. Some of his bitches were on yesterday moaning about Guido deleting and there is a long term whine from Mrs dale about that.

  216. 216
    Ian E says:

    Matthew Parris also spinning like a top! What was that vulgar song – oh, yes… ‘Oh, we’re all queers together … ‘

  217. 217
    Quantrill says:

    And, presumably if he did not declare his “partner” he would be guilty of benefit fraud?

  218. 218
    pissed off voter says:

    I very much agree with your sentiments here, Guido, but take issue with the phrase ‘just pay the ill-gotten gains back and carry on ‘.

    This is just not the case, the most obvious example being Jacqui Smith ex-MP and bungler supreme; Conway is, perhaps, a more typical example – he stole 40 grand (at least) and was ordered to repay 10 grand. The list of such light touch ‘penalties is endless – perhaps worthy of a book. in it’s own right. I’m reminded of the much-spouted political mantra ‘crime does not pay’. Does it not, indeed?

  219. 219
    Can't remember my moniker says:

    New page just started!

  220. 220
    Pork Stuffing says:

    Move along please!
    Nothing to see here!!!
    Lets not dwell on the gay piggy thief unpleasantness

  221. 221
    Can't remember my moniker says:

    Bacon sarnies! My favourite!!

  222. 222
    What's My Name? says:

    Wali? Yup, that sounds appropriate. Next.

  223. 223
    Alf Garnett says:

    No smoke without fire, I say.

  224. 224
    restandbthankfull says:

    The BBC are banging on this morning about Alexander’s lack of financial experience. Did anyone hear them bang on about the lack of relevant experience of:

    Jacqui Smith – Teacher
    John Prescott – Union Activist
    Alan Johnson – Postman
    Gordon Brown – television journalist

    etc etc etc

  225. 225
    Freddie Forsyth says:

    Gadaffi supplier to the UVF (who accepted arms from the Kaiser in 1912) I wonder why?

  226. 226
    Quantrill says:

    What has Laws ” the “talented politician” ever done for his Yeovil constituents, apart from property developers.

    This is a challenge: Tell us what you have achieved as MP Mr Laws, or get out.

  227. 227
    Freddie Forsyth says:

    The UK is what you are referring to?

  228. 228
    pissed off voter says:

    I actually liked Laws – note the past tense – and he certainly sounded like like he was very capable. But he is a politician :)

    I think your defence of the man is quite flimsy. It comes across a he didn’t steal as much as he could have stole, threfore he is a good guy.
    really?
    Your ‘no comparison’ with Smith and Blears neglects a basic essential point they have in common- a total disrespect for the taxpayer.

  229. 229
    Southern Softy says:

    A case of *oh what a tangled web we weave* I think.

  230. 230
    What's My Name? says:

    I agree with Boris. If these, er , sailors wish to become martyrs, then it is only right that the Izzies should help them on their way. It’s the virgins you know..

  231. 231
    Anonymous says:

    It makes you wonder about all the dog meat on expenses. Were they buying food for pets, or were they fucking the dogs arses and paying off the rent-dogs with Chum.

  232. 232
    The BBC is biased and pro Labour ....have you not realised that fact yet says:

    No…but you miss the point…prior to the election the BBC was pushing for a “Hung parliament” mainly as the means to keep their patrons…Labour…in power. Unfortunately tthe LibDems didn’t play by the rules and create the much BBC hyped “Progressive Alliance of the Left” and so the resultant Coalition has no legitimate authority in the eyes of the lefties at the BBC and so must be brought down as quickly as possible…..

  233. 233
    Matthew Parris says:

    Gulf of Mexico

  234. 234
    Voice of Reason says:

    What a repulsive posting.

  235. 235
    KeithVaz'sPiggyBank says:

    Let’s not bring his colour into this.

  236. 236
    Freddie Forsyth says:

    6 county bank notes have Sterling on them as well.

  237. 237
    Maggies Drawers says:

    Wasn’t the Kaiser short of arms? *snicker*

  238. 238
    Freddie Forsyth says:

    I am glad things worked out for someone who did things honestly

  239. 239
    Anonymous says:

    fuck off TAT

  240. 240
    Uranus, The Magician says:

    Ted Heath?

  241. 241
    Anonymous says:

    probably thick as thieves

  242. 242
    Fred says:

    The term “right honourable” can hardly be applicable to a man that defrauded the tax-payer to maintain a sleazy secret lover, presumably in the belief that the rest of us wouldn’t consider voting for a gay man.

  243. 243
    What's My Name? says:

    Good idea! They can sneak him back in as the [salary-free – he doesn’t need it] office tea maker and then ask his opinion of certain courses of action, where to cut and by how much etc, they may be planning. Win-Win situation.

  244. 244
    Phil Bristol says:

    True..they have made a judgement that letting it out in this way will increase circulation and profit. Whether that proves correct in anything other than the short term is for debate. They might increase circulation for a day or two but in the longer term it might easily cost them. As I said they have lost one regular in me…..I am sure I am not alone. Cameron needs stability to sort this country out…not a newspaper endlessly trying to snipe.

    If they have info just put it out there once and for all so Dave & Co can get on with sorting the mess out that Bottler and the criminal gang have dropped us in.

    Where is Bottler by the way….? There are no heads on pikes yet so he must be somewhere.

  245. 245
    Number 10's cat says:

    The isrealis tend to aim low.
    I would be terrified at the prospect of spending an eternity surrounded by 72 frustrated women

  246. 246
    What's My Name? says:

    Simply pay them all another £50k a year and do away completely with expenses and allowances. They pay their own way, so no more questions of troughing. Works for me.

  247. 247
    Jonathan says:

    It’s not how the Irish would’ve reacted, it’s how the Americans would’ve reacted. Absolute fury and condemnation is my guess, with the military option being threatened. People seem to forget how much support the Yanks gave to Irish terrorists: arms, money, refusing to extradite suspects etc. They only became anti- terrorist after 9/11, that’s when the IRA actually realised the jig was up.

  248. 248
    lolol says:

    Think your putting too much hope in Dave and his Wisteria or his mortgages,it’s like letting the foxes look after the chicken’s or being friend’s with a shark,both will do what’s in their DNA and both if your still around will say sorry but will do it again.

  249. 249
    Technomist says:

    Laws has cost us £40000.

  250. 250
    Technomist says:

    Cameron is not the arbiter of morality in this country. He is only the Prime Minister.

  251. 251
    Penfold says:

    It raises questions of Ethics and Morals.

    He was in a relationship with a man was a lobbyist and director of a PR firm, this relationship was not disclosed.

    It questions his probity and ability to see right from wrong.

    It raises the question as to what was this relationship, one that had some measure of corrupt practices at its heart…peculation is disgraceful, and without disclosure how can one ever be sure that Mr Laws was taking appropiate action for the nation/party and not his boyfriend.

    He has let himself down badly. The defence offered is pathetic and highly flimsy.
    Morally and ethically he hasn’t a leg to stand on, ‘cos the relationship was not declared and we are unaware of what, if any benefit Mr Lundie has gained, apart that is from the cash flow.

    And that latter point, the cash, I trust the Mr Lundie has declared these monies on his tax return, as the amount charged is far greater than that allowed under the room to let rules by the HMRC.

    Ohh the webs that are woven……….

  252. 252
    Freddie Forsyth says:

    “Laws did not cost the taxpayer a penny and in fact saved it money and did not profit from anything.”

    How?

  253. 253
    Capt. Shadow - MI5 Wet Ops. Team says:

    And me…

  254. 254
    Capt. Shadow - MI5 Wet Ops. Team says:

    More ‘Rented’ than ‘Rent’…

  255. 255
    UKIP Until We're Free says:

    The real problem with Asian voting patterns is that they usually represent family affiliations (or long-standing village disputes about goats).

    Add to this the fact that they vote en-masse (dictated by the head of the household) and, not only is this open to corruption, but it renders party labels irrelevant – most UK Asians do not vote for (or even understand) the different philosophies of the parties, they just vote as tribes to support a family friend, settle old scores or pay off the bribe.

    Banning remote voting (postal and proxy) is the necessary first step, but the comprehension problem will take generations to solve.

    (Before you ask, I live near Bradford – I know of which I write).

  256. 256
    UKIP Until We're Free says:

    Gordo, Harold MacMillan…….

  257. 257
    LesAbbey says:

    Bit slow coming out with that Guido. mind you not as slow as Laws coming out of the closet.

  258. 258
    Umpire says:

    New Balls, please

  259. 259
    MartinBain says:

    Spot on, Guido.

  260. 260
    Thunderbox says:

    Ah and did that loan form part of a mortgage application and, if so, was it declared to the Bank or Mortgage company. We all remember that other ‘friend of Dorothy’ Lord Mandlebum making false application for a mortgage, don’t we.

  261. 261
    The Money Spinner says:

    There was no way the coalition could justify keeping David Laws as Chief of Treasury. People do foolish things. Laws handled the situation with dignity, humility and decency by resigning. It would be an injustice to let his talents go to waste and he should be given a second chance.

  262. 262
    Anonymous says:

    I don’t know. To me it somehow seems a bit more fundamental. A good number of MPs seem to be the type of person most of us in our day to day work lives would avoid or would just perceive as dodgy. We are being held hostage by 3 odd little organisations who’s combined membership wouldn’t go half way to match the attendance of CofE churches on an average Sunday (let alone the left footers, the chapel lot, and our Islamic/Hindu friends.) Yet the main parties who are keen dismantle centuries of tradition like to portray themselves as warp and weft of society.

  263. 263
    Quantrill says:

    I take it that you weren’t living with your mother when you claimed HB? The rules are different if you rent from a relative or partner who does not live under the same roof.

    Laws was living with his partner and as I understand the rules as applied here, would not qualify for HB in those circumstances.

    In any case he did not claim HB but was a fraudulent senior politician claiming expenses to which he knew he was not entitled. Neither did he need to defraud the taxpayer in order to provide a roof over his head.

  264. 264
    PJB says:

    Interesting questions for lobby defending from sexuality angle are:
    A) if Laws was straight and hiding a girlfriend with all other circs the same then what would be general reaction – would *anyone* have defended him?
    B) if (as i suspect) there’s no doubt he’d have gone if that were the case – wouldn’t this actually support the argument that fear of homophobia is actually less of a case now and indicate a positive movement forward in general acceptance?

    If a man or woman can be hounded out for cheating and cannot be defended on grounds of sexuality – isn’t that actually (despite appearances) good?

    Peter

  265. 265
    Technomist says:

    Once he has been acquitted by a jury, or served his time…

  266. 266
    Duncan says:

    Guido there’s no plain reading of this sentence “Nevertheless, none of this trumps the fact that he took taxpayers’ money to pay his boyfriend’s rent on the quiet.” which isn’t totally bollocks.

    He took taxpayer money to pay rent TO his boyfriend on the quiet. The alternatives would have been taking taxpayer money to pay rent to someone else (probably more rent) or becoming a co-signatory on the mortgage (in which case he could have claimed twice as much as he did). Bit of a difference.

  267. 267
    Budgie says:

    “Are we going to continue to hound the MPs for what we know they did …”

    Yes.

    Because they hounded us with 3600 new laws to make us criminals in their frenzy to control what we do and think.

  268. 268
    Budgie says:

    Put like that, of course, Laws’ thieving £40,000 over 7 years doesn’t really compare with Gordoom’s thieving £160 billion every year.

  269. 269
    Anonymous says:

    Why? Has he got a second rent boy?

  270. 270
    Infanta of Castile says:

    to say nothing of the re-mortgaging Blairs or Gordon Brown who claimed for cleaning (plus new kitchen) for a London flat he didn’t live in because we were putting him up in Downing Street (and paying his SKY sports sub)

  271. 271
    Infanta of Castile says:

    quite a few get chauffeur driven cars to bring them to and from work.

  272. 272
    Wellington Boot says:

    Blimey, you must be important. Are you the secretary of COBRA or similar? At the point when I left the senior civil service, it seemed as if any old New Labour member who was fluent in management crap-speak and up to speed on diversity awareness and the benefits of fruit and veg, could get hired in as a ‘consultant’ or seconded from some pressure group to a senior management role. The delays necessitated by the old vetting procedures didn’t seem to apply.

  273. 273
    Looking2Rent says:

    If an MP has an occasional shag with their landlord or landlady, does that make the person your “partner” under the Parliament expenses rules?

  274. 274
    Sir William Waad says:

    They never leave their friends behind.

  275. 275
    Sir William Waad says:

    No. They have to ‘treat each other as spouses’. That is a poor definition, because you can only treat somebody as a spouse if they are a spouse and same-sex couples aren’t spouses. It would be better just to say ‘if they are a couple’.

    As I’ve said, an expenses system that requires one to enquire whether two people love each other is broken. It’s time to flush the whole ridiculous system down the £1.99 plughole, pay MPs more and do away with expenses.

  276. 276
    Anonymous says:

    at UKIP Until We’re Free:

    “Banning remote voting (postal and proxy) is the necessary first step, but the comprehension problem will take generations to solve.

    (Before you ask, I live near Bradford – I know of which I write).”

    I worked in a Polling Station in Leeds on Election day. Throughout the day but particularly in the evening I saw many young or elderly sub-continent Asians shepherded by 30- and 40-somethings into the the room to pick up their two ballot papers, local and national, and then shepherded into the voting booth and given instructions of some sort in a language I did not understand.

  277. 277
    Looking2Rent says:

    So surely Laws should have stuck to his original defence. He is not my partner (or spouse).

  278. 278

    […] sadness among the commentariat – more than any other expenses-related casualty. This has baffled some in the blogosphere, who believe he broke the rules and so had to […]

  279. 279
    Looking2Rent says:

    Thanks for posting the FT link.
    The best article on this subject that I have read.

  280. 280
    I hate New Labour says:

    Good article.

    He may be bright, but if he is as wealthy as rumour has it *and* he was so determined to protect his private life, why did he feel the need to steal £40k?

  281. 281
    I Believe Any Old Crap says:

    Harold Wilson, William Gladstone, Margaret Thatcher (drag queen), the list goes on…

  282. 282
    Cynicism = Naïvety says:

    As do so many others with little experience of life.

  283. 283
    cant hunter says:

    Wasn’t Pitt the elder a roarer, or was it the younger ? No must have been the younger. Mind you in those days who had the vote . A recent biographer climed that Lord Roseberry batted for the opposition, but then there was a book to sell, and Lord R. ain’t the most charismatic of figures.

  284. 284
    Come on, get a grip says:

    Let me just get this straight. Because the Labour majority in the last three Parliaments passed all those laws, we’re going to hound the MPs who opposed them?

  285. 285
    Tragic says:

    My left buttock says “Sterling” on it.

    Ten years ago I got drunk in a tattoo parlour.

  286. 286
    Sterling J. Hackenmasher says:

    Yes?

  287. 287
    Oasis of Sanity says:

    And me.

  288. 288
    Sorrowful Old Man says:

    Let us never forget those who laid down their lives in both World Wars.

  289. 289
    Bystander says:

    Completely agree with you, Lizzie.

  290. 290
    Corn Law Rhymer says:

    Should all be made of bacon rind?

  291. 291
    Corn Law Rhymer says:

    Were drafted by C. Lewis Hind?

  292. 292
    Corn Law Rhymer says:

    Are less than crystal clear, we find?

  293. 293
    Corn Law Rhymer says:

    Will leave us wizened, pouched and lined?

  294. 294
    Corn Law Rhymer says:

    Are guaranteed to cleanse the mind?

  295. 295
    Corn Law Rhymer says:

    Should be imposed by justice blind?

  296. 296
    Corn Law Rhymer says:

    Are yours for fifty quid, unsigned?

  297. 297
    Corn Law Rhymer says:

    Must make ‘em weep, the bigots whined?

  298. 298
    Corn Law Rhymer says:

    Left Fidel Castro disinclined?

  299. 299
    Corn Law Rhymer says:

    Have now been wholly undermined?

  300. 300
    Corn Law Rhymer says:

    Are worse than Proust and Hobbes combined?

  301. 301
    Corn Law Rhymer says:

    Repel the coarse and unrefined?

  302. 302
    Corn Law Rhymer says:

    Were underdone when last I dined?

  303. 303
    Corn Law Rhymer says:

    Are those for which the martyrs pined?

  304. 304
    Ruth Kelly's plaything says:

    Rubbish. The taxpayer’s interest ends at the point where the expenditure is deemed not excessive. Who it goes to is irrelevant.

  305. 305
    Donald Maclean says:

    All of which is fair enough as long as the personal information disclosed is kept private.

  306. 306
    cheeplarf says:

    Can he no longer afford a racquet?

  307. 307
    You're not looking too well yourself! says:

    “72% of people polled thought it was right for Laws to resign. ”

    Yes, but no attempt was made to distinguish between those who thought it “right” in the sense of “He’s a crook, he should be out on his arse”, those who considered it politically expedient in the present climate and those who thought “This is the action of an honourable man”.

    In total, 52% of respondents said he should eventually be allowed to return to the cabinet, which suggests the “He’s a crook” brigade are in the minority.

  308. 308
    Lady Tweed-Pargetter says:

    Are you any relation of the Somerset L-W’s?

  309. 309
    Fergal Sharkey's da says:

    Paid by licence payers. Different.

  310. 310
    Nonpartisan says:

    Couldn’t agree more.

  311. 311
    Budgie says:

    What, you mean you want to hound just ZaNuLiebore for expenses fiddling?

  312. 312
    He's Spartacus says:

    I wondered who would be the first to shout “It’s the principle”.

    Congratulations for hiding behind them.

    Regards,

    Tom

  313. 313
    Stronghold Barricades says:

    So will Laws become the first victim of the impending “recall” option for those MP’s who “get into trouble”?

  314. 314

    […] Political blogger Guido Fawkes points out (emphasis in the original): […]

  315. 315
    Richard Fuld says:

    There is some academic work done if you have a £million you really want £1 more.
    If you have £2 million you really, really want that extra £1.

    The amounts might be miniscule but they are wated more the more you earn.


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Boris on British Jihadis. Apparently based on MI5 intel:

“If you look at all the psychological profiling about bombers, they typically will look at porn. They are literally w***ers. Severe onanists. They are tortured. They will be very badly adjusted in their relations with women, and that is a symptom of their feeling of being failures and that the world is against them. They are not making it with girls, and so they turn to other forms of spiritual comfort — which of course is no comfort.”


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