Thursday, 30 April 2009

Brown's brisk bumbling

Another day, another dollop...of humble pie for Gordon Brown, forced to abandon his flat-rate daily allowance in order to appease his mutinous backbenchers. Ever since his bizarre home movie I've been wondering why Brown wants to push through reform of MPs expenses quite so quickly...

..and then cynicalHighlander brought this Daily Mail article to my attention on the Beeb's Blether with Brian blog: Love cheat MPs on 'suicide watch' as expense claims threaten to expose affairs.

It makes for an interesting read. If even half of it is true there could well be a few by-elections for Brown to deal with over the next few months.

And in light of these claims it makes perfect sense that Brown would seek to rush Sir Christopher Kelly's inquiry into expenses reform. Or when Kelly refuses, quickly cobble together some half-baked proposals without consulting his own party or the opposition parties. And when both of those fail, back down in order that something, anything(!), can be voted through. Even though the Kelly inquiry is still continuing.

When the full horror of Labour's gorging on expenses emerges Brown calculates that he simply must be able to say that he's already started reforming the system, even if only in a rushed and cack-handed fashion.

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