What is Ian Lavery Covering Up?

Labour’s Ian Lavery (Wansbeck) shouted “object” last night to the proposed publication of details of dozens of ‘secret’ deals struck by MPs who broke expenses rules. MPs were considering a motion to the allow Standards Commissioner John Lyon to disclose information on fast-tracked ‘rectification’ cases dating back more than two years – covering the shaming “expensegate” period. Ian Lavery’s cry kicked the proposal into the long grass.

The ‘rectification’ process allows MPs caught fiddling their expenses to merely say sorry and pay it back (sometimes, as in the case of Jacqui Smith, only in part) without the Standards Commissioner doing a full investigation. Imagine criminals being able to do that – crime would become risk-free!

Lavery objected despite MPs on parliament’s own cross-party Standards and Privileges Committee recommending the proposal earlier this year, he also objected to a second motion giving the Commissioner the power to initiate an investigation an MP may on his own initiative. Ian Lavery was first elected in May so he can’t be accused of wanting to cover up his own misdeeds. So who put him up to it? Well the Labour Party has six former and current MPs in the dock or under police investigation. Ian Lavery is PPS to Harriet Harman, Deputy Leader and Chair, Labour Party…


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