Monday, June 01, 2009

MP's expenses and Constitutional reform

It appears that the primary solution of Labour and the Liberal democrats, and to a lesser extent my own party to the expenses scandal is to offer some form of constitutional reform.

Your right, I don't get it either. As one letter writer* to Radio 4's PM put it, its a bit like scrapping the Route master bus because someone has been caught fair dodging. There is no obvious causal connection.

It has even gone as far as suggesting House of Lords reform and a reform of the first past the post voting system. No one seems to suggest more honest MP's.

The thing is though, that the transparency brought by publishing MP's expenses pre redaction has in the main solved the problem. No one will again apply for a mortgage that does not exist or an island for ducks. If they do, they will be unseated.

Most of the public think constitutional reform is a load of old cobblers as well, apart from possibly the ability to recall an MP.

Personally I think that the fact that this is even being considered shows how parliament has abrogated its responsibility to manage itself, because it could have thrown out people like Derek Conway. The reason why it did not was because members of parliament felt they and he were underpaid, and perhaps his offence was being caught. That is a disgrace, and also why we need a general election so we can get a house full of people who understand that MP's are actually very well paid. Then perhaps they will be prepared to sack those who break their own rules.

*It may have been an email or voice message.

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