UPDATE: Owen Paterson was forced to resign – but that isn’t the end. After his lobbying scandal, more than 30 MPs have now been named as holding second jobs as ‘consultants’ or ‘advisers’. Many on the list, mostly Tories, are pocketing over £100,000 from outside interests for supposedly as little as a few days of work per year.
And it’s not just about lobbying. Geoffrey Cox MP has just declared a £400,000 a year second job as a lawyer. No wonder he has only spoken in the House of Commons in one debate this whole year!
Enough is enough. As the sleaze scandals grow, it’s time to ban the whole practice of MPs having second jobs. Support is growing for this.
MPs sometimes talk about second jobs as if they are providing an extra service to the community. But when you look down the list, you can see these ‘side hustles’ have become an open door for corruption, and for neglect of their parliamentary duties.
No company pays £100,000 for a few days’ work unless they are getting something else into the bargain.
Owen Paterson was found to have “repeatedly” used his position as an MP to benefit two companies who paid him £100,000 a year. The parliamentary standards watchdog called it “an egregious case of paid advocacy”.
The government changed the rules to let him off the hook – until being forced to U-turn in the face of public outrage.
Being an MP is a full time job with a salary of over £80,000. Good MPs are always talking about how busy they are and how there are not enough hours in the day to help everyone. We need every MP to be 100% focused on their job – being an MP.
This is the most corrupt government in my lifetime and they are busy changing the rules to give them more power to do whatever they want.Lisa, Sussex
It is important that we can trust our MPs to act with integrity. They are there to represent the electorate, not to make money.Noreen, York
£100,000 per annum in addition to his MP’s pay. Teachers and nurses would have to work their socks off for more than 3 years to get that sum.Christina, Berkshire
MPs should not be allowed to lobby on behalf of companies who are paying them. It is a conflict of interest. All MPs should uphold current Parliamentary standards.Catherine, South London
Sick of one rule for them and another rule for we the people who pay their wages.Bella, Plymouth
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