Why Reform Now?

Hansard 26 Jan 2006 : Column 2271W

PRIME MINISTER

Honours (Prevention of Abuses) Act

Norman Baker: To ask the Prime Minister whether he plans to (a) review and (b) reform the Honours (Prevention of Abuses) Act 1925. [45974]

The Prime Minister: No.

So just over a month ago there was no problem, then Blair gets caught with his fingerprints all over the till and his personal Downing Street advisers allegedly lying to the Appointments Commission whilst running a covert funding operation. Today he and all the parties are like repentant psycho-serial-borrowers “Stop me before I anonymously borrow again”.

This recent EDM from Gordon Prentice takes on an amusing dimension today:

EDM 1604 ABUSES OF HONOURS 08.02.2006

That this House notes that since the Honours (Prevention of Abuses) Act 1925 was put on the Statute Book there has been only one prosecution, in 1933; and believes with the passage of such a long time without prosecutions, organisations such as the Specialist Schools and Academies Trust should be reminded of its existence.

What most sickens Guido is the defence the whole political class is adopting – “everyone does it.” That is not a defence, it is an admission of guilt.



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Dominic Raab wrote in his letter of resignation…

“This is, at its heart, a matter of public trust,” he told the PM, concluding: “I cannot reconcile the terms of the proposed deal with the promises we made to the country in our manifesto at the last election… I believe that the regulatory regime proposed for Northern Ireland presents a very real threat to the integrity of the United Kingdom. I cannot support an indefinite backstop arrangement, where the EU holds a veto over our ability to exit…”

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