How’s it going to affect the party political battle?
My first reaction when I saw the front page of this morning’s Telegraph was, I guess, hardly unique – what was the political affiliation of the six who appear to form the next stage of the ongoing expenses saga?
For until the election is over and the votes are counted we are going to be in a high-octane political atmosphere as the Tories sense victory and Labour tries to hold on to power. Anything that could affect public opinion will be looked at in terms of the electoral impact.
Well the answer to my question is there in the story. Three are Labour MPs, two are Labour peers and the final one is a Tory peer who is also a county council
chairman leader – so mathematically, at least, better for Mr. Cameron than Mr. Brown.
It is important to state that nothing has happened yet. The report says “Keir Starmer, the countryâ€™s top prosecutor, is expected to make a decision on whether to prosecute the politicians as early as January, before a General Election…The Director of Public Prosecutions will decide whether the MPs and peers face court on counts of fraud, which carries a maximum sentence on conviction of 10 years, or false accounting, for which the maximum penalty is up to seven years…Police and criminal lawyers are confident that charges will be brought.”
Whether this actually happens we don’t know but the paper seems confident enough to splash this over its front page this morning.
The report carries responses from several and states that the others were not available for comment.
Whatever the whole affair still has a long to go and will affect the whole of politics right up to polling day. Inevitably it will be a factor in the election and my sense is that Labour is indeed coming out worse than the Tories if only for the fact that it has a lot more incumbent MPs.