The current median average salary in the UK is £25,123.
So MPs earn more than 2.5 times the average salary. I know that they are expected to live in and commute between two separate places but they are given an allowance to cover the cost of the second home (if they live far enough away from Westminster) and also given expenses to cover the cost of travel between the two places. I also know that there are likely to be some changes to the regime around this but I am sure that MPs will still have an allowance for travel and accommodation that will be adequate.
There seem to be a number of people who think that MPs are actually underpaid and should earn more. Perhaps £100,000 or more from what I have read.
I am afraid I completely disagree. I know that some MPs (and prospective MPs) could earn more in their former professions but frankly, becoming an MP is about far more than the money. For someone from an average background the salary would be a huge increase. For those from more wealthy backgrounds it may be a salary cut. That's just the way it is.
There are all sorts of perks associated with become an MP which those seeking to enter parliament are well aware of and are outside of any financial incentive. Here are a few I thought of earlier (I am sure there are lots more):
- Name in "Who's Who" for life (Matthew Parris cites this as one of the best things about becoming an MP!)
- Getting on TV and radio frequently
- Ability to affect legislation
- Being a VIP in your constituency
- Having the ear of the most powerful people in the country
- Parliamentary privilege
- Great springboard to further opportunities post parliament
MPs are paid more than enough in my view. If someone is deterred from entering parliament because 2.5x the median average salary is not enough for them then they are probably not right to become an MP in the first place.