Saturday, February 21, 2009

Guido Fawkes: Chris Grayling's Scam, Worse Than Most

The whole Jacqui-gate thing is embarrassing. Not in the way you may be thinking however. MPs of all parties make residential arrangements, run them by authorities, change them if they are told to, stick with them if they are not, but essentially they can have any number of attempts at complying and also - dare I say? - they can profit from one additional home claim until they've paid it off, then switch to a different home. And so on and so forth.

It has been known for a good long time that me old schooly Chris Grayling claims for an ex-Council flat as his first second home - though he lives 30-60 minutes away, depending on means of transport and time of day. Chris is building a bit of a buy-to-let portfolio. We all know that. Hardly a great revelation from Guido on this one.

Alistair Darling was found renting by the Mail around a week after the Jacqui scoop. But that story seems to have evaporated. Is the Mail going after Jacqui because she is female? And excusing Chris and Alistair because they are Male?

Just give all these MPs the money, grossed up.

CORRECTION Sun 12:15: The flat is allegedly Grayling's second "home".


Guido Fawkes said...

Except he doesn't. His main home is his real mzin home. He claims for this as his second home.

Chris Paul said...

Yes, he claims the second home allowance for an ex-Council house that he surely hardly if ever "lives in" as his main home is just down the M40.

He is building a property portfolio is he not? His little sideline. As Michael Meacher and his wife have done. No doubt others.

They're almost all flexing their terms and conditions to get the best remuneration package they can. This is normal economic behaviour. Putting value judgements in the rules is silly and liable to lead to disputes and "bringing into disrepute" claims. The system brings the system into disrepute.

Tangled, knotty, needs sword of truth to slice through it.

From my POV this is a ridiculous storm in a tea cup as most MPs - apart from inner London - can claim amounts towards £24,000 for their second home, there are any number of legitimate ways they can contrive to do this, they can change the arrangements as they go along, in response to changes in rules, or profit opportunities.

Give them all the cash is my view. They are probably seriously underpaid if they are full time MPs.