The Thick of It

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Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Is anybody listening?

David Cameron still has some way to go before he has total control of his party. Today's outbursts by Douglas "clean my moat" Hogg and Sir Patrick Cormack that MPs deserve even more pay, following the expenses scandal, shows a party still very much out of step with the national mood.

The Daily Telegraph was simplistic to suggest that many MPs don't need a second home when they have to work late in Parliament. However, to suggest that MPs' pay should be doubled is so far off the scale as to be simply stupid.

Once MPs stop having second jobs and focusing on the job they were elected to do we'll be in a better position to start sorting the mess out. If MPs themselves actually agreed to the many sensible reforms of Parliament that have been suggested on a number of occasions we might start to make progress. If Parliament met at reasonable office hours, not at night, we might have progress. It might also allow MPs to spend more time with ordinary people and less time in the Westminster bubble. That really would be progress.

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