8 thoughts on “Clare Short on British Thatcherism-Blairism-Brownism

  1. Candidates on attack after Darlington MP’s expenses order

    6:00am Monday 8th February 2010

    CANDIDATES hoping to replace Alan Milburn as Darlington MP have gone on the attack after it was revealed he had to pay back thousands of pounds in expenses.

    Last week, The Northern Echo reported that Mr Milburn had returned £11,000 of wrongly claimed expenses for mortgage interest and council tax claims on his second home in London.

    Mr Milburn, who lives in Northumberland and is standing down at the next General Election, said he was deeply embarrassed and blamed careless administration.

    Last night, Tory parliamentary candidate Edward Legard said: “Alan Milburn will not be held to account by the people of Darlington for taking taxpayers’ money to which he was not entitled.

    “He has cleverly stepped aside before that can happen.

    “Mr Milburn attributes his £11,000 over-claim to careless administration.

    “Ordinary people in Darlington will simply not accept this as an excuse.

    “Anyone accused of taking £11,000 in similar circumstances would not have had the luxury of avoiding pun- By David Roberts david.roberts@nne.co.uk ishment by pleading careless administration.

    “They would have ended up facing a jury.

    “Mr Milburn’s former personal assistant is now standing in his place.

    “I look forward to her public and unequivocal condemnation of her former boss.”

    Mr Legard was referring to Jenny Chapman, Labour’s parliamentary candidate. She worked as a researcher for Mr Milburn until she left in 2002 to have a baby.

    Despite her political allegiance, she also criticised Mr Milburn, and said: “Alan Milburn has been a hardworking local MP, who wanted the best for Darlington. Having said that, there are things I would do differently.

    “I disagreed at the time, and disagree now, with Alan moving out of Darlington.

    “I am shocked and feel let down by all of the hundreds of MPs who have abused the expenses system, such as it was.

    “We need a new generation of MPs with more energy and a new attitude. I will always live in Darlington because it is my home and where I grew up.

    “I also promise that I will never abuse any future expenses system and that I will publish details of anything I claim.”

    Lib Dem candidate Mike Barker said: “I do not think he has devoted himself to the town the way he should have done in the past few years, and it now appears he has been milking the system for all he is worth.

    “Most people will be glad to see the back of him.

    “Given the amount of time he has spent in Darlington on his job in the last few years, he should be paying back half his salary as well.”



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