"here is no suggestion that Miss Smith has broken any law, or even rule. But she has cunningly exploited an over-generous and unduly loose system by which MPs claim expenses in order to fill her handbag with taxpayers' money. To any right-minded person, her main residence is the substantial house she owns in her constituency. It is where her personal effects are mostly kept, as with those of her family. It is where her children live. Yet she claims the London house she does not own, but where she lodges with her sister, is her main residence. The authorities are happy with this, and she profits accordingly.
We know Miss Smith's game. She will struggle to hold her seat at the next election, as Labour will struggle to hold the country. Faced not just with the loss of a ministerial salary but also an MP's one (with all its juicy expenses), and with life in the House of Lords perhaps no longer a gravy train, it makes sense to coin it in while you can. This includes having her husband on her payroll, too. If lean times hit the Smith household, there should be a bit of fat to live off while the Job Centre does its work."
Wednesday, 11 February 2009
Simon Heffer on Jacqui Smith (now there's an image!)
Somehow I don't think that Simon Heffer is a huge fan of Jacqui Smith; here's an extract: