In recent weeks I’ve tried to think about just who MPs are representing nowadays. We have Tony McNulty receiving £60k in the last two years for a second home, which was just 8 miles from his constituency home and Jacqui Smith claiming £116,000 for living in her sister’s spare room. This is at a time when many people are struggling with the cost of just one home.
By all accounts, it is unlikely that Mr McNulty has even broken any rules. And this is the core issue. That the rules actually allow MPs to rake it in by claiming expenses for second homes, for travel, etc. How many people in Southend have to commute to London for work? They can’t claim the cost of their travel, let alone the cost of a second home.
Is it any wonder that in a recent survey 86% believe that MPs expenses are too high, whilst more worryingly 68% think that MPs make dishonest expense claims. Its about time MPs got their house in order, and get back to representing those who pay these exorbitant expenses.