Friday, 18 May 2007

The Freedom of information Bill, So Much for "Open Politics"

Today I'm going to put my faith in the House of Lords. I hope that they can show the people, that they will stand up against the disgusting behaviour displayed this afternoon, by some members of the House of Commons.

David Maclean has today sponsored the Freedom of Information (Exemption) Bill.

Mr Maclean said his bill was necessary "to give an absolute guarantee that the correspondence of members of parliament, on behalf of our constituents and others, to a public authority remains confidential".

If this is the genuine intent of Mr Maclean's Bill then it is indeed a worthy cause to put forward. However if this Bill is being used, as many claim, purely to hide from the public their MP's expenses, then this Bill needs to be scrapped RIGHT NOW. Why can't this Bill have a clause that states that it does not include the disclosure of MP's expenses? I and many other taxpayers have been shocked by the flagrant abuse of the Expense System by some MPs and I'm not sure I trust them to self regulate their spending in the future.

Liberal Democrat MP Norman Baker, who has led calls to block the Freedom of Information (Exemption) Bill said: "It is an effrontery for the House of Commons to make the deeply hypocritical move of exempting itself from a law that applies to every other public body in the country."

MPs voted in favour of the Bill by 96 to 25, meaning it will now go to a third reading before being passed on to the Lords for their consideration. Let's hope the Lords see this Bill for what it is and reject it or amend it so that it does not allow MPs to hide their expenses from those they represent.

If this Bill lands on the Queen's desk in it's current form, she will have my sympathy for having to sign such a disgusting betrayal of the people.

Iand Dale has a list of the MPs that voted.

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Colin Campbell said...

Sickening. Not that I am on top of things in Yuch, but this smacks of MPs protecting their interests.

Simon Marshland said...

So MPs have passed the amendment to the Freedom of information bill. But no-matter what pious principles they may claim for this action, the electorate knows the reason that lies beneath this disgraceful act is a squalid desire to cloak their expenses from public gaze. Yet again it seems we must rely on the Lords to protect the public interest.

Daily Referendum said...

The last Monarch to reject a Bill was Queen Anne in 1707. Wouldn't it be great if Liz did the same.