Labour’s West Midlands Mayoral Candidate Liam Byrne went on the defensive last night following Guido’s revelations he may have breached IPSA regulations when using Parliamentary expenses to fund his campaign. Reacting to the news that Leicester MP Andrew Bridgen had asked IPSA to investigate, Byrne sneered:
“I have not, and I will not take lessons from Andrew Bridgen, who is a man who racked up £24,000 worth of expenses on hotels, and has one of the worst voting records in the House of Commons…”
Still seeing red, Byrne turned his ire towards the interviewer – Reach PLC‘s Jonathan Walker – who quizzed him over the wage payments of his one of former staffers:
“What was disappointing about the story that you wrote on this, John, is that you didn’t bother to contact the individual concerned. If you had done that, which is actually a standard of integrity we expect from Reach PLC journalists, she would have told you that she worked in a voluntary capacity outside office hours on that work […] Now, we’re not going to take action against you and Reach, but frankly, you put yourself on the wrong side of the line when you wrote that.”
As Guido revealed yesterday, IPSA is now warning MPs that “using any IPSA-funded resources for your election campaign may be a criminal offence”. Byrne must be very confident…
Crazy yanks, eh?