Tom Harris draws deep from the well of our money.

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Thumbnail image for harrismerge.pngIn February 2008, Tom Harris, the Lord of the Scottish Blogosphere and Trappist monk of anti-Brownism, claimed a staggering £1568.69 (pdf) under the Additional Costs Allowance. 

Items we paid for include £952 for his rent, £400 for pies food (the maximum under the "rules"), £80 for cleaning (scrub your own house or pay for it yourself mate), £55 for his council tax (!), £11.61 for his TV license, and £28 for telephone and internet.

So, before even touching his salary, he's spent the equivalent of a month's income, after tax, for someone earning more than £24,000. Of our money. (calculation via the useful Listen To Taxman).

People in other lines of work don't live like this, and neither should MPs.


We have here an MP who, unusually, is renting (and thus not trying to make a profit through rising prices) a modestly costed flat in London, and who has the audacity to pay £20 a week to a local cleaner.

I don't know about the rest of us but I want my MP resting in his London flat when he gets there and writing an excellent blog, not vacuuming the floor at eleven at night when he gets home and annoying the neighbours. I suppose a sales assistant at Curry's in Neasden doesn't live like this, it's true, but Tom is an MP.

I thought this was one of the less petty and partisan blogs - was I deceived?

You were wrong, I'm petty and partisan. Check out the colour at the top.

More seriously, are you really defending this set of claims? I would describe it as extraordinary, but it seems pretty commonplace sleaze by Westminster standards.

I'm more than happy for Tom to get a cleaner in, but surely he should pay for it from his wages? I've paid for cleaning myself so I could get on with blogging, but it never occurred to me to bill my work for it.

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This page was published on June 18, 2009 2:33 PM.

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