Thoughts on politics and life from a liberal perspective

Monday, 23 March 2009

Lib Dems lead on second homes!

It's great to see that we are taking to lead on the second homes issue. Peter Hoskin has reported this today on the Spectator Coffee House blog.

Sarah Teather has released a statement that says:

"It is completely unacceptable that London MPs living within commuting distance of Westminster are allowed to claim money for a second home. Thousands of Londoners travel to work in Central London every single day, so why on earth shouldn’t their MPs?

The London second homes scandal doesn’t just damage individual MPs, it damages Parliament and our democracy.

It’s time that Parliament cleaned up its act. A full inquiry would be welcome, but unless Labour and Conservative MPs are prepared to vote for change it will continue to be business as usual at Westminster."

I am 100% behind this. It is exactly what we should be doing. As Irfan Ahmed posted a couple of weeks ago, Lib Dem MPs score higher than all the other parties in every catergory when constituents have been surveyed. We are clearly trusted by people and I would argue it is our duty to tackle this sort of behaviour as the two main parties clearly will not.

What I don't want to happen however is for the instances involving Jacqui Smith and Tony McNulty to get completely lost in these calls for change. I still feel that they have a moral duty to accept they have strayed well outside the bounds of acceptable conduct, even if what they did is not strictly against the rules as they are currently constituted.

UPDATE: Alix has just posted a good article on this subject on LDV here.

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