Jun 25, 2010

Paying Your Friends

It becomes more and more obvious why Nadine Dorries was so spooked by the Telegraph's investigation into MPs' expenses. She seems to be pathologically incapable of spending expense money honestly.

Today the Telegraph has another story about dodgy expense claims and, once again, it's about everyone's favourite comedy MP. Dorries has been spending a lot (you might say a ridiculous amount) of money on marketing and research done by a company owned by her close friend Lynn Elson.
New figures released by the Parliamentary authorities yesterday showed Mrs Dorries claimed £17,825 to pay Mrs Elson’s marketing company between July and December last year.

The MP for Mid-Bedfordshire also paid £34,000 to her friend between September 2008 and June last year – making a total of more than £51,000 in 15 months.
Mrs Elson has previously featured in photos on Dorries' blog that were obviously taken on social occasions. The pictures were removed following an earlier report in the Telegraph about Dorries and Elson's business relationship. This story was about almost £10,000 that Dorries spend on Elson's services in 2007. This emerged after this year's general election but before the coalition government had been formed.

Investigation of Dorries' expenses by the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards continues. However it can't be completed until the new Parliament's Standards and Privileges Committee has been appointed.

The report is going to make fascinating reading.

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