November 20th, 2012

Helen’s Unfair Grant

Equalities Minister Helen Grant has opened up a new front on the rent swapping saga: claiming for a flat despite owning a property in another constituency close enough to London, that if they represented they would be unable to claim for a second home.

We have had dozens of MPs owning property in London and renting another but the dishonest geography of this scam looks even more blatant. Last night’s Dispatches reported that Grant lives in a £1.8m house near her Maidstone seat and claims the maximum, to the penny, amount for taxpayer-funded flat in London.

Despite the commute from Maidstone being little over an hour, as a non-London MP, she is entitled to a second-home allowance. But Grant also owns a house in Reigate, less than twenty miles from Parliament. A taxi back there would be far cheaper than kitting her out with a luxury Thames-view pad. As for Ms Grant, her staff were more than happy to twist the knife on last night’s show. It seems she’s upset almost everyone. More later…

UPDATE: Grant also employs her husband Simon with taxpayers’ money as a senior parliamentary assistant.


148 Comments

  1. 1
    Cinna says:

    And this from the Telegraph:

    More than 50 MPs have been allowed to censor details of their taxpayer-funded expenses claims after insisting that information about their second homes could compromise their security.

    Obscene or what?

    • 3
      LOL says:

      Hopefully S@lly can accidentally list them all on tw@tter

      • 146
        What the fuck did I call myself last night says:

        I can’t find my past posts at all since I gave a silly name here, and can’t remember it.

        A song for all in the same position – respect to you all, mommies baking, as they do,

    • 4
      Anonymous says:

      When a house is owned by a company in a tax heaven, no one could find out who owns the property. I am not saying MPs are doing it but if a MP do this there is no way to find out.

    • 6
      Anonymous says:

      £20,000 a year for rent for MPs look extremely generous when we are going to have a benefit cap of £24,000 even for families living in Westminster.

      I think £10,000 will be more reasonable, £10,000 including all house hold expense.

      • 22
        Golden Boy says:

        They should pay it out of their remuneration. After all, they are all volunteers – no-one said they had to be an MP. Most of them have professions which would pay far more than MP salary.

        • 27
          Anonymous says:

          It is not that simple as they have to work from two places, Westminster and where he / she is a MP. They need to be paid a reasonable amount.

          But I think their salaries are too high and should be paid the average salary.

          • Ranter says:

            She owns her own solicitor’s firm that sucks hungrily and regularly from the legal aid teat. She’s fucking lapping it all up. Greedy bint.

        • 60
          Anonymous says:

          There are loads who’s only work is being an MP.

          I do accept there are some who only serve themselves but people have to accept there are once who serve their communities well.

        • 81
          Duty Pedant says:

          ‘accept there are once who serve’

          You mean they serve us only once, the rest of the time they do not?

        • 97
          Handycock (Teen Fondler) says:

          I don’t have a career, I have not had a proper job since I was 21 except for working for Mencap for a short time, until they got rid of me, although I was awarded the CBE for charitable works – crazy system isn’t it. I need every penny I am paid and am worth it. The work I do in eastern Europe and Russia has immeasurable benefits for me, especially as I am now an OAP and am finding it difficult to pull the birds in the UK. Here is my CV.

          http://therantingkingpenguin.blogspot.co.uk/2010/10/handycock-rides-gravy-train.html

          Yopu can see I am worth every penny of taxpayer’s money that I receive. Boaz.

        • 118
          a few greedy bastards from Northern Ireland says:

          Yes, I’m an MLA at Stormont too

        • 129
          Oats for scrotes says:

          Pedant, he means ‘ones’.

      • 52
        Nothing has changed. MPs are still on the make. says:

        £25 a night at a Travel lodge is even more reasonable. My company does not rent me a home when I am working away. And given that MPs are only supposed to be in London 4 days a week out of 20 weeks in a year (80 days) then the argument that they also need to take their families with them holds no water.

        Truth is most MPs are strangers in their own constituencies anyway.

        • 64
          Anonymous says:

          If most MPs are strangers in their own constituencies then problem is with the people who re-elected him / her.

          • Scouse says:

            What else could I do? I always vote Labour and the Berger woman was my only option.

          • Dougie says:

            Our only hope is for voters to examine the characters of all candidates and only vote for those you can believe are trustworthy. It’s us blindly voting for party rather than candidate that has allowed all the parties to put up such poor candidates and get away with it.

            You may want to vote Labour but if they put up a poor candidate they don’t deserve your vote. Equally, I don’t vote Labour but if Kate Hoey stood in my constituency I’d vote for her because I respect her honesty and integrity. In the end, we get the MPs we deserve. We can’t expect the political process to work if we don’t participate.

    • 17
      To Be Fair says:

      To be fair you have to admire the fraudulent creativity of our MPs, now if they could just turn that to deficit reduction etc

      • 30
        Anonymous says:

        £35bn interest on money printed by BOE has been given bank to government, you cannot be more creative than this. Billions has been produced from nothing.

        • 43
          Anonymous says:

          the purpose of debt is to create more debt.
          this is capital.ism at root.

          the purpose of capital.ism is to reduce the value of our effort by a factor of 7.

          any system can work.
          it needs faith.

          • History Teacher says:

            “any system can work.”

            The Soviet Union tried Communism for 75 years.

            It didn’t work.

          • Famines and Firing Squads says:

            Admittedly it didn’t work in the end but on the plus side we had loads of fun killing millions of our countrymen who disagreed with us.

          • Oats for scrotes says:

            They must have over-factorised by 0.5.

      • 138
        Living in 98 percent white Merseyside (with a view towards 99% white N. Wales) says:

        Anyone would think we’d taught them a thing or three.

    • 71
      ciconia says:

      Still seems be a view that exes are an entitlement.
      Lived a lot on expenses myself moving around over here and overseas and the rule was always ‘expenditure incurred wholly and necessarily in carrying out one’s employment’
      What these people are doing would have led to dismissal.

    • 85
      I have grown to love Twitter says:

      Sussex Police are investigating Sally Bercow over naming of girl on Twitter!

      So funny.

    • 123
    • 145
      Blowing Whistles says:

      Maragret Hodge is a fucking dirty lying ‘child abusing’ concealing biatch. Wonder what her rabb i thinks about it all? Oh they like a bit of 3 year olds as it says in the talmud ….

      Some journalists need to re-develope their spines

      http://order-order.com/2012/11/20/quote-of-the-day-541/

  2. 2
    Anonymous says:

    Twatson rents rooms from a Unite official.
    Is that property owned by the Unite official or paid for out of members subs?

    • 12
      Anonymous says:

      If doesn’t matter who they rent it from as long as it is open, transparent, market rent and fair to claim.

    • 19
      Anonymous says:

      Just checked compared to other MP claiming in London, he is claiming much less.

      • 29
        Selohesra says:

        Our kids used to be in same class – I believe they were trying to sell the Kingswood place – relocated son to school in constituency etc but then could not sell. Actually nice family despite being MP

        • 55
          Anonymous says:

          There are loads of nice decent MPs from all parties.

          It almost like the community we live in, there are nice decent MPs and nasty scum-bags.

  3. 5
    BOB DOLE (15 kids to firteen muvers) says:

    Troughing bastards get away with it yet again

    • 93
      XXXxx says:

      I have said it before, should not MPs if they live within travel to work time of within 1 1/2 hours of Westminster should not be entitled to a subsidised flat /house in London this is the time that is put on unemployed looking for work, their travel to work is not subsidised as is mps and they could be asked to it on basic minimum wage, mps are paid many times the basic minimum wage.

  4. 8
    Tony Eden from Eton says:

    Can some right minded public spirited citizen please publish on a spread sheet here a list of all the offending Mp’s together with full particulars of their individual false accounting .

    Then it will be a very simple matter for any citizen on a relevant Electoral Roll to tackle the offending MP head on .

  5. 9
    BOB DOLE (15 kids to firteen muvers) says:

    “It’s all within the rules” Yes your fuckin rules you thieving low life scum , not the ones we have to live by
    God i wish every one of them was hanging on piano wire from lamp posts

  6. 10
    None of the above says:

    Another nail in the fuckers coffins

  7. 11
    Sandra in Accounts says:

    These troughing pigs just do not get it.

    They think they are fucking royalty. Their sense of entitlement to leech off us is extroidinary.

    They have the audacity to tax us to death whilst thieving as much of our money as they can?

    Our Parliament is a den of mega thieves – made even worse by the fact that they are merely a talking shop, tourist attraction now that the EU is in charge.

    • 78
      Anonymous says:

      the world of them and us is royalty versus us.
      we can be royalty too. but it takes courage to aspire for anything better, a better royalty.

      To be formiddable, just be you, it needs the energy of your core.
      and that is what the lizard is after. so protect your soul. nothing is more valuable. The only thing going for us within a corrupt system is our int.eg.rity,

      int.eg.rity
      give our internal egg a life. go on, be a good egg.

  8. 15
    Where are Tony Blair's Expenses says:

    Grant claims the maximum to the penny !

    Let the electorate deal with her

    Another Tory seat lost to go along with those along the route of HS2 and those to UKIP with their 10-14% of thew vote.

    Cameron needs to book the removers now

    • 89
      Anonymous says:

      grant shapps is about get rich.
      all talk? when money speaks blair talks, his get rich scheme was implemented in broad daylite but hidden in plain view.

    • 92
      Anonymous says:

      the grants of this world are always looking for something.
      grant this grant that.
      who decides what they deserve, they are looking for a helping hand

  9. 16
    Last Quango says:

    I really don’t understand MP’s who do this – if you take away the hysterical few – most people are happy to pay for overnight accommodation in London when needed (hotel) . taxis etc…. to rent a house like this just take the ****! Paying for rent, bills, furnishings etc is so ridiculous it beggars belief! completely unacceptable.

    • 21
      Sandra in Accounts says:

      Why can’t every constituency own a home in London for their MPs, which is passed on to a new MP when elected?

      Why do we have to buy each of them a fucking house?

  10. 20
    Just a thought on troughers says:

    How many of Ms Grant’s Maidstone constituents have been offered the luxury of a taxpayer funded flat in London to save them their daily commute?

    I would be willing to wager that she also claims for a season ticket to travel daily from Westminster to somewhere so the taxpayer gets to pay for both the flat and the travel!

    • 133
      House hunter says:

      What is it about Maidstone. I seem to recall a certain MP claimed for a completely unlived in (and unvisited) house there. Must be something in the water.

  11. 24
    Do you know who I am says:

    Look, the mistake you lot continually make is that you are judgng us by little people standards. We are MPs after all.

    • 39
      Anonymous says:

      all the UK think their robbing parasites except the Labour voting sheep and anywhere north of Derbywho dont care a f% as long as the baby eating Tories are out of goverment.
      Pathectic

  12. 25
    Bob, ex mp & speaker says:

    I didn’t become an MP not to get stinking rich.

  13. 28
    Adolf Hilter says:

    If you ask me the whole bunch of them need firing.

    Sack the lot. Get a strong leader to run the country.

  14. 32
    Red x is mandatory says:

    It is reported this morning that only a ‘handful’ of missiles were launched into Israel yesterday as if this reveals the presence of some benevolent hand holding back a greater onslaught. Might I suggest that the real reason is that after several days of targeted strikes the capacity for Hamas to attack is severely reduced .

  15. 34
    MPs are scum says:

    I’ve had it with our MPs, they are in the main disgusting people.

    That so many are pulling this London flat scam shows it is orchestrated and they have organised it as a group. Obviously speaker Bercow is also involved as publishing the name of a landlord does not compromise security.

    • 51
      Sally *innocentface* says:

      Gimme 3 minutes and I shall tweet the facking lot of em

    • 94
      Red x is mandatory says:

      The antics of The Speakers wife have severely compromised him as he will be aware he has become a laughing stock. In order to compensate he will be going out his way to ingratiate himself with the MPs who could make life very difficult for him otherwise.
      Thus he is compromised.

  16. 38
    BOB DOLE (15 kids to firteen muvers) says:

    Breaking news
    Nadine Dorries Charging taxpayers £10,000 for one months rent
    of a hammock in a jungle slum , while also being paid from other source !

    • 65
      Red Egg Millitit..... says:

      Just wait until she is out, I suspect she will not be showing her face or answering questions for a long long time :)

  17. 41
    Anonymous says:

    France downgraded by Moody’s.

    • 58
      UKIP.i.am.still says:

      Hardly the biggest shock of the year. The only shock is why the French stock market hasn’t fallen through the floor. Yet.

    • 63
      France says:

      It eez all zee fault of zee Inglish anglo-saxon peeg dogs. Socialism weel prevail! Now we must have zee forty winks, ze business weel re-open later in zee afternoon. Or maybe in zee morning.

  18. 44
    Abu hava Qatada says:

    In the interests of my security, that nice Mrs May has said she won’t reveal any details about our benefits. I like her, she has the look of the camel, very sexy.

  19. 45
    We should be told says:

    Where does the Senior Parliamentary Assistant live?

  20. 49
    NBeale says:

    Come off it. Helen Grant is a really good egg – working incredibly hard as a minister and an MP. And she took a big pay cut to become an MP. It’s ridiculous to expect her to spend 2 hours a day commuting.

    • 53
      None of the above says:

      ’2 hours a day commuting’

      You mean like the majority of the electorate who commute into London?

      Loon

    • 67
      ed martin says:

      yes its tough being a lawyer isn’t it?

      would you like to quantify the big pay cut so that we can all cry?

  21. 62
    Red Egg Millitit..... says:

    How about increasing pay by £10k then removing all expenses and allowances.

    As most are now career politicians with no life experience, might just help ‘em understand how the rest of us live :)

    • 69
      None of the above says:

      Well how about this.

      1. Travelodge are in the sh1t – FACT
      2. Purchase a Travelodge near the HoC from them for a good price and convert to MP accomodation.
      3. Each MP gets a room gratis. If they prefer to go and live somewhere more luxurious when in London, fine no problem, but they pay AND they cannot claim any extra expenses like taxis etc
      4. They then get a simple (but generous) nightly living allowance when they are in London

      If they don’t like it then stuff em

      • 100
        Just a thought says:

        How many cells are there in Wandsworth?

        Seems like a good place to put the troughers up while they are not in their constituencies and there would be no need to do it up – slopping out wouldn’t do them any harm!

      • 103
        Red x is mandatory says:

        I fear point 4 would be abused by those who think it is their right and ‘within the rules’ to claim a London allowance whilst back home in Yorkshire.

    • 70
      Ex-voter says:

      How about putting their pay into a deposit account that they can’t touch until after a general election and only if they hold onto their seats? For subsistence, they can be given a £24K annual loan (with their pay as security).

    • 75
      Someone in Suffolk says:

      How about putting their pay into a deposit account that they can’t touch until after a general election and only if they hold onto their seats? So they can’t get hold of their money for up to 5 years. For subsistence, they can be given a £24K annual loan (with their pay as security).

    • 79
      Luciana Berger says:

      Why increase their pay?

      There is no shortage of wannabe MPs. What is badly wrong though is that most MPs have never lived anywhere near their constituencies until they became MPs.

  22. 66
    The heart of the matter says:

    The Bercows need investigating.

  23. 73
    Operation Crossbow says:

    The answer is simple. The state purchases houses and flats in London. If you’re a single MP you get a flat if you have your wife and kids youbget a house.

    Furniture is provided from a central resource just like military family quarters, if an MP wants to provide their furniture they pay for it just as people in the forces do.

    If the house is no longer required it is sold off and the profits go back to the state.

    • 83
      politician=traitor says:

      And make sure the flats/houses are in Tower Hamlets, so the MPs can enjoy “the rich multicultural experience” they thought was so vital for the UK.

      • 137
        Wotta gud die dear, son says:

        That is walking distance from Westminster, so they’ll all get fit walking to/from the office. They can claim for an umbrella each.

    • 111
      Don't encourage them says:

      Why should they get a house? They are only in London 4 days a week and they only attend parliament 4 months in a year.

  24. 80
    Moussa Koussa Mark 2 says:

    7 down…stuff Borisido Boriswkes would rather ignore

    * Michael O’Leary – airport in the Thames Estuary “stupid” & “hair-brained”.
    * Pa*edo ring hasn’t gone away – only the wrong person accused
    * Dave’s damp squib appeal process announcement
    * Gideons new pension raid
    * Numerous high profile job losses.
    * Neo Con Nut Israelis’ behaving like Neo Con Nuts
    * Dave hires foreigner for strategy job

  25. 82
    Sally's not very bright, is she says:

    Sally Bercow, the wife of Commons Speaker John Bercow, could be in trouble with the law and has suspended her Twitter account after breaching a court order by naming a schoolgirl who allegedly ran away with her maths teacher.

    Mrs Bercow, already on a list of those who wrongly named or linked former senior Tory Lord McAlpine with child abuse claims, sent a message on Sunday night to her 59,000-plus followers on Twitter asking what happened to the teacher, Jeremy Forrest, 30, and reportedly named the girl. The tweet was later deleted after Mrs Bercow was apparently warned about the order by journalists. She later told The Times she had suspended her Twitter account, saying: “Apparently, I shouldn’t have tweeted that. You need a law degree to be on Twitter nowadays. It’s ridiculous.”

  26. 90
    restore the monasteries says:

    Equality,the only times we are equal is, the minute you are born,and,the minute you die, the rest is very unequal and its ideological claptrap to think otherwise.Who invented the equality agenda and why,?You only have to look at our MP,s to see how equal they are to the rest of us.Where there is no honour,there is no grief.”!!!!SHAMELESS,.

  27. 101
    John Page says:

    Wasn’t that Ann Widdecombe’s constituency? If so, I seem to recall her saying she didn’t have a second home … if her constituents could commute, so could she.

  28. 105
  29. 108
    XXXxx says:

    A message to Dave, please get finger out and sort this expenses fiasco out, be the man who who finally puts his foot down and put mp expenses on a written footing, a start would be to change the word expenses to allowances, hence the more they clain the more tax they would pay. Your mps would not like you for sorting the mess out but your estimation will have risen many times in the minds of the British electorate, and you will go down in history as the man who stood up to all the mps.

  30. 110
    # says:

    Sorry, that page doesn’t exist!
    Thanks for noticing—we’re going to fix it up and have things back to normal soon.

  31. 115
    The Boss says:

    Is it not time that the thieving scumbags who inhabit our Parliament had
    ‘Honesty Mentors’,honourable persons who would ensure these scumbags
    kept to the straight and narrow.Now where the hell could we find honourable
    persons?

  32. 121
    Moussa Koussa Mark 2 says:

    Has Porky Pie Pickles still got his 2nd home in London, eventhough his own home is only 30 miles from Westminster

  33. 122
    Earl of Croydon says:

    I thought they said she lived in Kingswood in Surrey, which by any stretch of the imagination cant be described as close to Maidstone.

  34. 124
    Screwed Taxpayer says:

    Dave —- are you an ineffective gutless ponce, or what?

    We are getting very seriously pissed off with the continued troughing by M.P.s

    SORT IT OUT.

    You have been warned.

  35. 126
    Mad Frankie's Older Sister says:

    Was the job of her assistant advertised?

  36. 128
    keredybretsa says:

    Lotsaplaces to stay, and rest her 3 heads, Kent, London and Surrey. But she ain’t got many buddies left.

  37. 130
    dunstall says:

    Cameron should sack her

  38. 147
    Anonymous says:

    Where is Blowing Whistles when s/he is needed?

  39. 148

    Helen’s Unfair Grant – Guy Fawkes’ blog I can’t figure out how do I subscribe for your weblog


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Cathy Jamieson MP, Labour’s Shadow Treasury minister, commenting on Treasury analysis of the economic impact of tax changes…

“If the Treasury is looking at the economic impact of tax changes, then surely it should examine the impact of the rise in VAT and cuts to tax credits? George Osborne’s £12 billion VAT rise knocked confidence, helped to choke off the recovery and has cost families £1,350 over the last three years.”



orkneylad says:

What’s he been doing FFS, mining bitcoins?


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