Even less in an Uber…
MPs have been getting it in the neck this week for 9p mileage claims, but this is something to really get peeved about. Some top digging by Press Association has found John Bercow billed the taxpayer £172 to be chauffeur-driven to a conference at Carlton House Terrace, just 0.7 miles from parliament. And that’s not all:
He is the “reforming Speaker”…
Poor Nick Clegg has seen his £134,565 Deputy Prime Minister’s salary plummet to a measly £67,000 now he is merely a lowly MP. How will he cope?
By hiring Leading Authorities, a Washington based agent, to manage his after-dinner speaking engagements. Boasting of his “internationalist approach to world affairs”, Clegg says he is available to give speeches “in five European languages”:
“For UK audiences, Clegg shares his experiences about the future of politics and the direction of the UK, specifically relating to the EU. For international groups, he explores how current UK politics affects international relations.”
How much will it set you back to book him? A cool $55,000.
Asian audiences with deeper pockets are asked to “please inquire”.
Seems a bit steep… Ken Clarke will do you a drab speech about Europe for under 10 grand…
It’s been a busy week for Keith Vaz, first accused of abusing his position and now embroiled in another mysterious scandal over his election expenses. His local paper report that Vaz spent £100 to use the premises on Uppingham Road, Leicester – his own taxpayer-funded constituency office. Vaz’s election agent Piara Singh Clair explains: “we did it because we needed a room and it would have been expensive to hire another one. It was a nominal sum”, bizarrely adding that no money had actually changed hands despite it being declared as an expense. If no money was actually spent, why was it falsely declared to the Electoral Commission? Curiouser and curiouser…
A Guido investigation can reveal that Jeremy Corbyn is leading Andy Burnhan in the Labour leadership race despite Burnham raising over £100,000 more in donations.
Burnham has declared £132,000 of donations towards his leadership bid, accepting cash from lefty doctors, the hippy green subsidy sponger Ecotricity and defence lobbyist Howard Borrington, among others.
Yvette Cooper has trousered £82,000, £50,000 of which came from shamed ‘expenses Queen’ Barbara Follett and her husband Ken, who have been longstanding financial backers of the Balls-Coopers.
Liz Kendall has declared only £36,000 of donations, her benefactors include Patricia Hewitt and Blairite obergruppenführer Tim Allan of Portland.
Corbyn meanwhile has declared a grand total of zero, suggesting he has yet to cash Unite’s cheque or receive a single donation above the threshold at which MPs have to disclose funding. He has raised over £30,000 in small donations from individuals through a crowdfunding effort.
So far Burnham’s effort to buy the leadership is trailing Corbyn’s austere campaign…
At the height of the explosive UKIP row over Short money, Nigel Farage outbid Douglas Carswell by insisting that UKIP would not take a penny of the £650,000 to which the party is entitled:
“I’m going to recommend that we don’t accept any of it. Given we’ve had an argument over this, I don’t want UKIP to look like other parties, grubbing around after public money.”
Funny then that Carswell is advertising for a new speechwriter on a whopping £60,000. Rather a well-paid job for a party that is supposedly skint…
Guido understands that UKIP have rejected Nigel’s recommendation and agreed to accept some Short Money, though Carswell says the sum is significantly less than £650,000 per annum to which they are entitled. If they are happy to blow sixty grand on a glorified parliamentary researcher, it looks like they’ve trousered a hefty whack.
Ousted Mark Reckless has meanwhile landed a job as the party’s new policy chief, as Guido revealed he would in May. He is said to be being paid “out of Electoral Commission funds” – suggesting UKIP have received a Policy Development Grant, which are “awarded to help parties in developing policies to include in manifestos”. This is also public money, paid in addition to Short money.
From un-resigning, to un-sacking, to un-not ‘grubbing around after public money’…
What an image:
The sinister sounding European Development Fund is the EU’s aid arm, splurging €22.7 billion a year on “aid for development cooperation in Africa, the Caribbean, and Pacific countries”. Or so they claim.
Analysis by the Taxpayers’ Alliance reveals that the fund approved three “grants” of €198,464, €86,860 and €45,873 to that deeply deprived third world country… Belgium.
What’s more, the three Belgian aid projects, totalling almost a quarter of a million Euros, are categorised as “confidential”. The fund refuses to disclose any further information about what the money was spent on.
It’s all a bit Sepp Blatter…
IPSA has revealed the roll call of shame of MPs who begged for more cash in the pay rise consultation. Only four had the balls to go on the record:
“I know I speak for the silent majority (who are
“MPs’ pay will rise to £74,000 as part of a package of changes to their remuneration,” IPSA confirm this morning: “The pay rise will be backdated to 8 May 2015″.
The expenses watchdog are spinning that this is a good […]