Category Archives: Expenses

Spendthrift Suella: Braverman wastes cash on herself – and on cruelty to refugees

Benefits Braverman: how the Mirror reported the way the Home Secretary has been fiddling the system.

Is this what you call value for money?

Suella Braverman – like the rest of the UK’s current Tory government – seems to be adapt at playing the system to secure what she wants for herself and her Home Office. Apparently the same rule seems to apply to both:

The cost to the public doesn’t matter.

So we see that at home, she has exploited a loophole allowing her to claim £25,000 that she doesn’t need:

The Mirror article states:

She has claimed nearly £25,000 in five years for her London house, while living rent-free with her parents when not there.

Such handouts are designed to prevent MPs who live outside London from being out of pocket because they have to run two homes – but a Mirror investigation suggests Ms Braverman uses them to pay the household bills on her £1.2million family pad in Bushey, Herts.

It is within the rules but not “in the spirit” of them, one MP said.

Her expenses claims are all within the rules, but the hardline Tory, who earns £67,505 on top of her MP salary of £84,144, has been accused of exploiting a loophole in the system.

Ms Braverman, who recently railed against a “Benefits Street culture”, told watchdogs she “fully funds” the home she stays at in Fareham, Hants.

But she failed to mention it is her parents’ house and so costs her nothing in rent.

And at work, she has refused to roll out an accommodation scheme for people who have come to the UK to claim asylum that would cut costs in half – apparently because it is not cruel enough:

According to the Graun,

 a Home Office-funded scheme in Bedfordshire … cut the cost of accommodating refugees and migrants by more than half when compared with placing them in detention. The savings came through housing people and giving legal and welfare support.

This week, the UNHCR (the [UN] refugee agency that helps the UK government improve its asylum system) will praise [the system].

The home secretary, however, is intent on overseeing a huge increase in the Home Office’s detention estate, which experts estimate will take billions to fund… The Home Office is also paying more than £5m a day to house asylum seekers in hotels.

Meanwhile, the illegal migration act will, says the Refugee Council, lead to “tens of thousands”’ of refugees being detained, with internal government projections indicating costs could top £3bn over the next two years. A report this week by IPPR thinktank is expected to warn that the law will only worsen the chaos.

The UNHCR’s evaluation of the Home Office-funded pilot is expected to praise the Bedfordshire scheme because it was “more humane” and treated refugees and migrants with civility. Critics say it is this aspect that has seen the scheme effectively abandoned by the Home Office, whose bill gives the home secretary a legal duty to detain and remove anyone deemed to be entering the UK illegally.

Sources with knowledge of the scheme said: “The findings fly in the face of the illegal migration act. They certainly contradict the Home Office narrative and rhetoric of ‘invasion’ and ‘scary migrants.’” Shortly after she was reappointed as home secretary by Rishi Sunak, Braverman told the Commons last October that refugees and migrants crossing the Channel in small boats were “the invasion on our southern coast”.

The report stated that “The King’s Arm Project, based in Bedford, has since August 2020 supported 75 vulnerable migrants of 23 nationalities, offering them legal advice, clothing, mental health support, English language learning and GP registration while in the community.

“The pilot was more cost-effective than detention and led to better outcomes, such as settled status. Fewer than half of those held in immigration detention centres are deported.”

The demands of the new Act of Parliament should not have been relevant to the pilot scheme in Bedford, as its findings were made available to the Home Office last summer. It is not even the only “alternative to detention” scheme to be wound up by the home office – one in Newcastle was ended in 2021.

Instead, her latest development is a plan to spend £306 million creating three new “migrant detention centres” to house a total of 1,020 people.

The logical conclusion is clear: Braverman wants to inflict as much unnecessary cruelty on people seeking asylum here as she possibly can, and she doesn’t care how much the country has to pay for it.


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Why is Helen Whately happy to be on Question Time but cagey if the questions are about her expenses?

Helen Whately: voters in her Faversham constituency are disgusted that she is claiming more in rent expenses than most of them earn, despite being extremely rich. And she’s not even a very good government minister…

Tory MP Helen Whately was a panellist on the BBC’s Question Time yesterday (Thursday, May 11) – to the surprise of Faversham constituents who can’t get her to answer questions about her enormous Parliamentary expenses bill.

The Minister for Social Care earns £113,612 a year, is married to a director and founder of an energy company (think about the amounts they’re raking in) and they have recently bought a £1.35 million farmhouse in a village on Faversham’s outskirts.

But she claims £3,250 per month rent expenses, presumably for a property in London. That adds up to £39,000 a year.

Shockingly, this is perfectly permittable by Parliamentary rules. In fact, as a mother-of-three, she could claim up to £39,315, so she is just within the rules.

But it doesn’t look good for an individual who has a large amount of personal wealth to be taking, from the public purse, more money than most of us can dream of earning – because of Tory wage suppression.

Whately won’t answer questions about it, and this has triggered a predictable – and entirely justifiable – response from her constituents:

A Kent MP has been accused of ‘outrageous contempt’ for constituents after refusing to answer questions about her £3,250-a-month rent expenses.

It seems Whately did not stop to consider, when making her expenses claim, that voters might not be impressed if an MP of large personal wealth then claims even more, from them – after making them struggle to make ends meet.

I don’t think Helen Whately will be in Parliament after the next election – do you? I think voters will tell her to go and fend for herself.

Source: Faversham MP Helen Whately refuses to answer questions over rent expenses


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Do Keir Starmer’s DPP expenses undermine any socialist credentials?

Keir Starmer: doesn’t he look a bit posh to be a Labour leader?

I’m not sure the future leader of the Labour Party should have taken chauffeur-driven cars and first-class flights around the world.

Click on the link in the tweet and see what you think.


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Suella Braverman: wrong on crime, wrong on Rwanda, wrong on her own expenses

Suella Braverman: it all seems to be beyond her capabilities – her job, her expenses… everything.

Home Secretary Suella Braverman’s appearances on the Sunday morning political shows really were a plane crash, weren’t they?

She was wrong on sex offences in the UK, blaming “British Pakistani grooming gangs” for the majority when, as Angela Rayner pointed out last week, 300 rapes are committed every day – mostly by white men – and Braverman’s police officers turn a blind eye:

And isn’t this response pertinent?

Jeffrey Epstein may be described as the “groomer to the powerful”. Who did he supply with youngsters for sex? Why can’t the facts be told? Who is being protected?

Meanwhile, on Laura Kuennsberg’s show, Braverman insisted that Rwanda is a safe country to which our refugees can be sent. Is it, though?

She told Kuennsberg seven million people in the UK are out of work; in fact, official figures show the number to be much lower – just 1,253,000.

And finally, while all this has been going on, it seems she’s another Tory who won’t get her expenses claim right:

It seems she

claimed almost £25,000 in expenses over five years to pay for her energy usage and other costs, while living rent-free at her parent’s house during visits to her constituency.

Such financial aids were created to prevent MPs who live outside of London from falling into debt while running two homes, however an investigation by the Mirror found that Ms Braverman uses them to cover the household bills on her £1.2million family home in Bushey, Herts.

Although her expenses do not go against the rules, the hardline Tory has been accused of taking advantage of loophole in the system.

Ms Braverman, who earns £67,505 on top of her MP salary of £84,144, told watchdogs she “fully funds” the home she stays at in Fareham, Hants. However, she failed to explain that the house is actually her parents’ – meaning she stays there rent-free.

Apparently that massive Ministerial salary isn’t enough for her – even though she’s clearly incapable of doing the job properly.


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Liz ‘I claim Amazon Prime on expenses’ Truss wants to return to mainstream politics

Liz Truss: she should stick to her (publicly-funded) telly.

Read this story, from July last year:

People at the time were incensed:

And now it seems she wants to get back into mainstream politics.

It seems she thinks she still has a lot to say.

Perhaps someone should tell her to sit quietly and watch her telly.

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As the cost of Christmas rockets, MPs are now claiming it from us on expenses

This year’s Christmas dinner will be 22 per cent more expensive than last years – that’s almost a quarter as much on top of last year’s.

And it’s full of plastic, because of pollution.

Meanwhile, MPs have just been cleared to claim the cost of their Christmas parties – from us – on expenses.

That includes food, soft drinks and even decorations.

And then they have the cheek to tell us there’s no cash to pay nurses the wage they used to get 12 years ago.

Shops like Aldi are trying to put a smile on our collective face – but it’s not working well, as Russell Howard demonstrates:

Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.

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Is Liz Truss schmoozing her MPs with meals and drinks subsidised by you and me?

Liz Truss: is the evil Queen of Cheese even capable of charm?

Liz Truss is apparently going on a “charm offensive” (the “offensive” part I can believe, but I have trouble with the “charm” element), wining and dining her backbenchers to win support for her lunatic policies.

But is she charging these meals to the public purse?

Let’s go into that public subsidy element of the scheme in a little more detail, shall we?

It seems to This Writer that the cost of any schmoozing by Liz Truss should be met by Liz Truss. I don’t want Tory backbenchers supporting her madness so I don’t see why I should have to pay for it. And it seems I’m not alone…

It’s clear that the expenses system in Westminster is broken, and has been used to bleed money from the public to our elected representatives for a considerable amount of time. Oh, and also to our unelected representatives, it seems:

No, it isn’t hard to see where we are going wrong.

But how can we put it right when the people taking the cash have such a tight group on how it is controlled?

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Did ‘no handouts’ Liz Truss really claim for Amazon Prime on her expenses? [VIDEO]

Exciting moment: is Liz Truss reacting to a tense piece of action on an Amazon Prime drama, funded from public money by her expenses claim?

Let’s have a couple more reactions to Liz Truss being propelled to the highest office in the land.

Here’s a serious one from The Mirror:

And a less serious on from Jonathan Pie… with a sting in the tale:

Standout comment from either of them is the claim that Truss – who insists that she won’t give “handouts” to the millions who will suffer because of her party’s policies in government – demanded that public money should pay for her subscription to Amazon Prime.

Is it true?

Is she demanding that we subsidise her viewing of orc attacks in Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power – and doesn’t she have a less expensive way of seeing her relatives?

Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.

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MPs can get their energy bills paid on expenses. Where’s YOUR get-out scheme?

House of expense accounts: we pay MPs’ heating bills on expenses for them. Why won’t they help us pay ours?

HaggisUK (below) has it right: it seems MPs think it’s fine for poor people to pay their energy bills via publicly-funded expenses, but they won’t lift a finger to help us when it comes to paying our own.

Watch this video and mark it well:

Confused?

Mark Spencer, Leader of the House of Commons, said there are much bigger challenges for the UK than you and I paying his energy bills for him – and then went on to say that the challenge he had in mind was how we pay our own bills.

I think he’s right!

Because our challenge is persuading MPs like Mark Spencer to help us in the way they force us to help them.

Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.

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MPs use taxpayer-funded expenses to pay bills worth thousands. You get a £200 loan

Not strictly a backhander: but why are MPs getting their extra heating bills paid on expenses – along with an increase in their wages?

The following should be self-explanatory:

These are just three examples. Want to know how many MPs are sponging thousands of pounds from you – that’s right, you personally – this way?

340:

Connected to this, here’s a good question:

In fact, the pay rise is supposed to cover extra work that MPs have to do now – and RD Hale’s argument still works.

By the same logic, if MPs deserve £2,212 to cover the value of the extra work they’re having to do, then minimum wage earners deserve £66,770. And their heating costs paid by the government.

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