Monday, December 08, 2008

More Lucy Powell: John Leech Encroachment Illicit

Iain Dale reports on the rapped knuckles of Labour's Bridget Prentice:

The Parliamentary Standards Commissioner John Lyon has found Labour MP & Justice Minister Bridget Prentice guilty of misusing Parliamentary funds, when she delivered parliamentary newsletters to areas of Lewisham that aren't currently in her constituency but will be after the next election.

But John Leech MP (temporary, Lib Dem, Manchester Withington) has been doing this continuously since the new boundary was settled.

With parliamentary annual reports (at quite the wrong time of year!) in 2006 and 2007 plus a hybrid portcullis carrying leaflet of a kind with Parliamentary Reports in 2008.

Touting for and taking casework from the area too. Including with street corner surgeries at spitting distance from my own house. Sending us sermonal Christmas greetings. The swine! Also we hear taking casework from bordering areas of Wythenshawe and Sale East and Manchester Gorton which WILL NOT be in the Manchester Withington constituency when Lucy Powell MP takes over in the next year or so.

Even when he passed my daughter's signature on a Manchester-wide petition to her MP Tony Lloyd - passed to him for some reason - Leach took the opportunity to send her a bleating substantive reply, even though he acknowledged in it that HE WAS NOT HER MP!

Indeed we had a letter from him in this household THIS WEEK paid for by parliamentary funds, with a portcullis, calling us "Dear Neighbour" (yeuch!) and what's more asking extraordinarily FACILE questions, most with unusable answers on a series of Education and Health matters.

These included canvassing opinion on at least a couple of matters which ARE NOT still moot. Not only wrongly treating us as constituents. But also highly stoopid and factually very wrong. We may return to this.

Time for Lucy Powell to have another word with the Commissioner for Standards? I really do think so.

ONE DAY: We'll share the hilarious parliamentary boundary proposals for the area put in by one of John Leech's Lib Dem colleagues. How we laughed.


Everybody Hates Chris said...

A colleague of mine lives in Hollinwood near Oldham. He assures me that earlier this year he received a brochure from Michael Meacher paid for by his Communications Allowance.

Hollinwood is not in Meacher's constituency but the area will come under Oldham West after the next election. In fact, the front page of Meacher's glossy leaflet welcomes new constituents - seemingly ignoring the fct that he has to put himself up for re-election.

My colleague's mother lives near Alexandra Park in Oldham. Michael Meacher is her MP and yet she didn't get a parliamentary newsletter from Meacher but from Phil Woolas instead - who she will have the pleasure of voting against at the next election. This arrived on the eve of the council elections and was delivered along with a Labour Party leaflet.

I must admit that following Woolas' outpourings in the super soaraway Sun this morning it is very tempting to move to Oldham just to vote the old dog-whistler out.

Arnold Evans said...

Michael 9 houses Meacher? Does he even know where Oldham is?

Chris Paul said...

Fair point EHC, so I'll leave it. MPs of all parties are at it.

But surely this makes Dale's trumped up outrage or triumph of whatever that prose and told you so nonsense is supposed to be more risible?

And in the case of Leech of course the breaches in protocol and expenses rules appear to extend to taking up casework, corresponding with non-constituents individually, carelessly representing himself as our MP, and including party political materials and images within that print too.

And the Christmas homilies have been sick makingly pious at times. Who does he think he is? A Minister of the Church?

He also claimed to have had the latest examples printed at a back room behind his office where his constituency "Printing Society" do their laundry.