"If ye love wealth better than liberty, the tranquility of servitude better than the animating contest of freedom, go home from us in peace. We ask not your counsels or your arms. Crouch down and lick the hands which feed you. May your chains set lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that you were our countrymen."

Tuesday, 8 September 2009

Sir George Young Replaces Duncan

Tory Grandee Sir George Young has been named Shadow Leader of the House, replacing disgraced Alan Duncan.  Sir George was an unsuccessful contender for the Speakership of the House in June, when he was beaten into 2nd place by roughly forty votes.

"One of the longest-serving Tory MPs, Sir George entered Parliament in 1974 and served as a minister under Margaret Thatcher and John Major, rising to Transport Secretary. He was previously shadow Commons leader under William Hague, but left the frontbenches in 2000 to mount the first of two unsuccessful campaigns to become Speaker.

The North West Hampshire MP has most recently been chairman of the Commons Standards and Privileges Committee, which acts as an internal watchdog overseeing MPs' behaviour, but he has not been at the forefront of demands for reform of expenses."
Sir George will certainly bring a great deal more gravitas to the position of Shadow Leader and will do better than Duncan (who was far too amicable) in debates against his opposite number, Harriet Harman.  David Cameron has said he will have responsibility for "parliamentary reform, reform of expenses, of pay, of pensions, and all those issues."  There's no doubt that Sir George has the intellect and ability but does he have the will to clean up the House?

KPMG has prepared a report for the Kelly Inquiry next month. They recommend an end to taxpayer-funded mortgage payments for MPs.

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