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Nick Clegg emerges from the Liberal Democrats’ election tour bus in May 2015 [Image: Jonathan Brady/PA].

Nick Clegg emerges from the Liberal Democrats’ election tour bus in May 2015 [Image: Jonathan Brady/PA].


If any Lib Dems scoffed at Labour for having to pay £20 grand because of the ‘Ed Stone’ (and other undeclareds), they’ll need to eat a bit of humble pie.

This Writer is more concerned that this does not indicate a direction of travel regarding the ongoing investigations into Conservative Party election spending.

As far as I can tell, none of the undeclared Labour or Lib Dem expenditure is being suggested as having changed the result of the general election in particular seats.

But if the Conservative MPs under investigation turn out to have broken the rules, it seems far more likely that they took their Parliamentary seats illegally.

With around 30 Tories under suspicion, and the party’s majority in the Commons standing at much fewer, the outcome of the whole election is cast into doubt.

That is a much more serious offence – which of course is why the police are investigating.

We will need to keep a watchful eye on events, to ensure the Conservatives aren’t let off lightly – if any guilt is proved.

The Liberal Democrats have been hit with a maximum £20,000 fine by the Electoral Commission for failing to declare hundreds of items of campaign spending at the general election.

The watchdog has notified the police of a possible electoral offence after 307 payments totalling £184,676 were found to be missing from the Liberal Democrats’ spending return “without a reasonable excuse”.

In addition, invoices supporting 122 out of the 307 payments were
missing from the return. It found the declaration to the Electoral Commission may have been signed recklessly, as there was evidence indicating some people in the party knew it was incorrect.

The Lib Dems said it was a result of “human error and failure of process”. However, Bob Posner, the director of political finance at the Electoral Commission, said there were “systemic failures in ensuring that the rules were being followed”.

Source: Lib Dems fined £20,000 for undeclared election spending | Politics | The Guardian

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