Maria Miller has resigned.
The various factions are lining up to exploit it, or downplay it, for their own political ends. The BBC is not above such things.
Humphrys was having a bash at Gove this morning laying out the case against Cameron…..he’s out of touch and his judgment is flawed…it’s ok to be compassionate and to defend your people but you have to take hard decisions in the best interest of the country.
Nick Robinson told us that what the politicians got wrong was that they concentrated on the wrong thing. They should have ignored the conclusions of the Parliamentary committee that cleared Miller and instead taken account of the enormous public anger and sacked her.
So populist mob rule then? The BBC usually decries anyone taking account of the Great Unwashed. And is there ‘enormous public anger’ or is this really something whipped up by the newspapers, as Robinson admits, because of Leveson?
Humphrys said about politicians in regard to this case…‘You sit in judgement on each other and you’re going to protect each other…that’s patently wrong.’
Mrs Miller and her husband bought their house in London in January 1996. Her parents and two brothers came to live with them at that time as part of a single family unit. By 2005 the family unit comprised Mr and Mrs Miller, their three children and Mrs Miller’s parents.When Mrs Miller was selected as the candidate for Basingstoke in 2003, she rented a property in that area. When she was elected in 2005 she declared her Basingstoke home as her main home and her home in London as her second home against which she claimed Additional Costs Allowances (ACA) for the running costs.
Mrs Miller’s claims were significantly below the total costs of either home, which supports the judgment that parliamentary allowances were not used to cover her parents’ living costs.
We accept Mrs Miller’s contention that her overclaim in 2008–09 was inadvertent and caused by the rapid reduction in interest rates.
We have already recommended that Mrs Miller repay the £5,800 which she has identified as an overclaim. She should also apologise by personal statement on the floor of the House for her attitude to the Commissioner’s inquiries.
The Telegraph selectively reported this exchange as ‘threatening them with Leveson’.….but black out the relevant bits that put that ‘threat’ in context…that Miller’s father had just come out of hospital after an operation when he was dorrstepped by tyhe Telegraph reporter…….
JH: I should just flag up as well, while you’re on it that when she doorstepped him, she got Maria’s father, who’s just had a [removed] and come out of [removed]. And Maria has obviously been having quite a lot of editors’ meetings around Leveson at the moment. So I am just going to flag up that connection for you to think about.
HW: I’m not meant to knock on people’s doors?
JH: Knock on the doors of people when they’ve just come out of [removed] and had [removed]. Yeah. I would suggest that was probably a good thing.
They again miss out the relevant bits in their fuller report:
How Culture Secretary tried to bully MP watchdog
In a phone call, Miss Hindley then spoke to a Telegraph reporter and said: “Maria has obviously been having quite a lot of editors’ meetings around Leveson at the moment. So I am just going to flag up that connection for you to think about.” She added that the reporter should have “spoken to people a little higher up your organisation”.
The Telegraph has redacted personal details about Mrs Miller’s father from the transcript of the conversation with Miss Hindley.
Puts the BBC in a difficult position..do they support the Telegraph against a Tory….or condemn the Telegraph for doorstepping a sick man?….imagine if it had been the Daily Mail ‘hounding’ an elderly man who had just come out of hopsital. Wasn’t that the reasoning behind ‘Leveson’ as always explained to us by BBC presenters and guests….to protect us from the disgraceful Tabloids harassing vulnerable private citizens?
Perhaps the BBC did have such thoughts (08:14)…Evan Davis sounding like he had sympathies with Miller….‘You can see it from both sides’
He goes on to look at the ‘Press and politicians’…..suggesting MPs have come around to Miller’s side…they don’t like the Press’s approach.
Labour, the Leveson cheerleader for press regulation, hypocritically claims:
Ms Eagle, the shadow Commons leader, said: “The government seems to want to threaten the press with statutory underpinning to control the news agenda.”
But anyway…today’s conclusions by the BBC……politicians are….
‘out of touch…ignores the public anger…sits on judgement of themselves…fails to take hard and necessary decisons out of a mistaken compassion.’
That’s the BBC isn’t it? That’s just as ‘patently wrong’.
The BBC compassionately refuses to publish the truth about immigration or Islam or Europe because to do so, it feels, would be damaging to the overall cohesion of the country…to raise difficult questions would undermine the myth the BBC has woven about the benefits such things bring us….and worst of all would lead to a swing to the right of voters.
The BBC censors and shapes the news to downplay the downsides of certain policies and emphasises, or exaggerates, or invents, the benefits.
Isn’t it time the BBC’s self-regulation was put an end to and the BBC Trust consigned to the dustbin?
I wonder if the BBC notes the hypocrisy of Labour’s position?……..not so far…….
Labour is grandstanding and demanding ‘reform of the system’…MPs shouldn’t regulate each other…….Bit late I might suggest:
Despite that cover-up by establishment stooges, Ms Smith is guilty of thievery (and I dare her to sue me)
Yet how on earth does she get away with her thievery?
The first answer is the collusion of the Parliamentary authorities. Sadly, the Commons Department of Finance and Administration, to which Ms Smith submitted her claim, is notorious for allowing MPs to fiddle their expenses.
It is worth remembering that this watchdog never once queried the submissions from Tory MPs Derek Conway and Michael Trend, who stole tens of thousands of pounds of taxpayers’ money through blatantly corrupt claims. It was thanks only to whistleblowers that both men were eventually exposed.
The second reason for Ms Smith’s survival is the wholehearted complicity of the Conservative Party and the LibDems. Not a single MP raised Ms Smith’s cheating when she answered Home Office Questions.
So…… just a reminder….because no one at the BBC, or in the Labour Party, mentions this almost exact parrallel for some reason……Jacqui Smith was cleared and merely ordered to apologise after pocketing £116,000…she was never sacked….taking 6 months to ‘step down’ in a reshuffle…….
Jacqui Smith expenses claims total £157,631
Home Secretary Jacqui Smith claimed £22,948 in 2007/08 in taxpayer-funded allowances for her second home, official figures have shown.
Gordon Brown: ‘Let Jacqui Smith get on with her job as Home Secretary’
Gordon Brown, the Prime Minister, has appealed for Jacqui Smith to be allowed to get on with her work as Home Secretary, after she apologised for claiming the cost of pornographic movies on her parliamentary expenses.