MPs flout rules on first class travel
Filed under: News
So while Mr Joe Trainpassenger faces ticket price rises of up to 11% on rail fares this year we find that during the months of June and July last year MPs claimed for 1,334 first class train journeys at a costs to the taxpayer of £136,800.
That's a 155% increase on the same time last year. They also claimed £35,772 for a total of 115 business class flights for the same period of just two months. Do the maths and you're looking at a taxpayer bill of around £1million for the year just so MPs don't have to travel among the great unwashed.
And this is the tough new regime of the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority!
The loophole on train travel allows MPs to travel first class if they can find a standard class ticket that is more expensive. Well, that takes about five minutes on the internet when you look at the prices of the flexible 'Anytime' tickets so it's hardly a barrier.
Needless to say, the suggestion that MPs claim for standard rail fares but pay any first class supplement themselves was kicked into the long grass and instead they flout the rules, inflation-proof themselves and continue to ignore the depth of public feeling about their money-grabbing.
And it's not the nobodies. It's Energy Secretary Chris Huhne, former Chancellor Alistair Darling, David Miliband, Ed Balls and his missus Yvette Cooper among others. Senior politicians you think would know better.
Granted, Margaret Thatcher was not everyone's cup of tea as PM but the revelations last week about her horror at claiming needlessly from the public purse for household items made many wonder whatever happened to that sort of thinking.
Clearly the story passed by the current crop of trough snufflers.