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Thursday 4 June 2015

Sun Rises Too Late On MPs Pay Rise

The press has had two days to say something about the recommendation by the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (IPSA) that MPs should be awarded a pay rise of around 10% - or around ten times what nurses are being offered. For the populist press, one might have thought this was a no-brainer, especially for Rupe’s downmarket troops at the Super Soaraway Currant Bun.
Instead, the Sun has found itself echoing the words often attributed to French politician Alexandre Auguste Ledru-Rollin, “There go the people. I must follow them, for I am their leader”. Worse, it has taken the three leading contenders in the race to succeed Mil The Younger as Labour leader to cause the Murdoch faithful to get off the fence and commit themselves to opposing the rise. And that was not all.

The paper had to explain to its readers how it was that Young Dave had been beaten to the refusal punch by three of those rotten lefties. Liz Kendall had already “said she would turn down the pay rise or donate the money to charity”. Yvette Cooper’s spokeswoman “called for the prime minister to stop the rise going through, making clear she would not accept it herself”. And Andy Burnham did not hold back on the issue.

He Tweeted “I have always been clear that 10% pay rise for MPs cannot be justified. I won't accept it. Will turn down at source or give to local groups”. Only then did the appallingly cheap and nasty SunNation site proclaimALL MPS SHOULD GIVE UP THEIR BUMPER PAY RISE TO A WORTHY CAUSE”. For some reason best known to the paper’s staff, author Steve Hawkes managed not to mention Cameron at all.

But he did conclude “we don’t really mind who or to which cause the cash is donated to … But what we are doing is calling on ALL MPs of every colour not to trouser the extra £7,000 – instead finding a worth while cause to send the windfall their way … ALL 650 OF YOU NEED TO DO THE RIGHT THING”. So why not kick Dave? Ah well. Cameron is the Sun’s preferred PM. And he has not distinguished himself on this issue.

Before the General Election, the PMindicated he would rather scrap the MPs’ pay watchdog than allow the ‘simply unacceptable’ increase to go through”. But by yesterday, Downing Street said “that it now had no plans to make any changes to Ipsa”, despite the announcement of the proposed 10% rise. A senior No 10 source told that “He’s an MP, so if Ipsa sets the pay for MPs he will take the pay that MPs get”.

Only today has the BBC reported thatDowning Street is to make a new appeal to the body that sets MPs' pay to abandon plans for a £7,000 rise … Number 10 said a letter will be sent to the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority as part of its final review”. Did the Sun wait on Dave? Whatever their excuse, the supposed Peoples’ Paper has been caught making a late call on an issue where it should have led the field.

Stop being too frightened to criticise Dave, Sun people. That will not end well.

1 comment:

Richard Gadsden said...

Will Dave actually get the raise? He's a minister, and I understand that ministerial salaries have a chunk knocked off for ministers who are also MPs.