'Oh, so that's who Richard Morris is..." Lord Hattersley on The Daily Politics

'An influential activist' - The Guardian

'Iain Dale, without the self loathing' - Matthew Fox in The New Statesman

You are a tinker...' - Tim Farron

Sunday, 6 April 2014

So what didn't Maria Miller tell the Commissioner who investigated her expenses?

Much has been made of the fact that the Commissioner who investigated Maria Miller's expenses thought she should pay back around £45k, but the Standards Committee over ruled her and decided Miller need only pay around £6k back. This would rather beg the question - did the commissioner (Kathryn Hudson) get it wrong - and if so, should her position also come into question? After all - that would be quite a grave error.

Anyway, The Guardian reported on Friday (and again today) that the Commissioner and the Chair of the Standards committee have issued a statement to explain how the two very different conclusions were reached. The Guardian piece says...

"Sir Kevin Barron, the Labour chairman of the committee, and Hudson issued a joint statement on Friday to say that the smaller amount had been agreed after Miller provided further details about her mortgage to the committee."

But to me, this would beg another question. Why didn't Maria Miller give these full details to The Commissioner in the first place? I understand that MPs have a duty to fully comply with the Commissioners investigations (and we know from correspondence between Miller and Hudson that the former showed a certain reluctance to do so). But the statement issued on Friday would seem to suggest more than that - that relevant material was not handed to the Commissioner but was handed to the Committee.

So I wonder why the information was given to one - but not the other?

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