politics

Double-job Tories set to rake in £450k as Boris Johnson dithers on sleaze crackdown


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The Prime Minister has vowed to enact a major crackdown on second jobs after MPs voted for new rules. But as it stands, the Standards’ Committee is not due to report to the Government until January.

Double-jobbing Tory MPs are set to rake in more than £450,000 while Boris Johnson dithers over a sleaze clampdown.

An analysis of parliament’s register of interests has shown more than 40 Conservative MPs are keeping second jobs, while the government delays a clean-up of parliamentary standards.

Between now and the end of January, Tory backbenchers are on course to trouser £454,000 of outside cash, in addition to their £81,000 MP salary, with a total of 1,800 hours’ work.

And the practice could continue beyond January 2022 as the Prime Minister may yet kick promised reforms into the long grass.

Mr Johnson pledged he would enact a major crackdown on second jobs after MPs voted for new rules last week.

It will include an outright ban on political consultancy roles and that any outside role, paid or unpaid, should be “within reasonable limits” and not stop MPs fully serving their constituents.








Labour chairwoman Anneliese Dodds
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Image:

Getty Images)



But as it stands, the Standards’ Committee is examining ideas and is not due to report to the Government until January.

MPs due to take home cash include former minister Sir John Redwood. Between now and the standards committee report, he is poised to earn around £40,000 for his role working 12 hours’ a week as committee chair for the private investment firm, Charles Stanley.

Another ex-frontbencher Mark Garnier is set to cream in more than £30,000 for three second roles, one of which is listed as ‘principle speaker’ for BRI Wealth Management.

Former Transport Secretary Chris Grayling is due to earn around £20,000 as ‘strategic adviser’ to Hutchison Ports Europe.

And Andrew Mitchell, the former International Development Secretary, is on course to earn himself more than £30,000 from a series of private companies, including Ernst and Young and Kingsley Capital Partners.








Former Minister and Tory MP Sir John Redwood
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Image:

Dan Kitwood)



It comes after the Tories’ attempt to rip up the rules and get lobbying MP Owen Paterson off the hook spectacularly backfired and left the PM open to claims of Tory sleaze.

The North Shropshire MP, who has since resigned triggering a by-election, was earning more than £100,000 from two private companies and the Standards’ Commissioner Kathryn Stone had found he made repeated and “egregious” breaches of lobbying rules.

The Conservatives claim that MPs should have a further right to appeal, despite a similar process being available to them via parliament’s standards committee.

Labour chairwoman Anneliese Dodds told the Mirror: ““Conservative MPs with dodgy second jobs face a race against time before Parliament comes forward with plans to end this racket.

“Perhaps that explains why so many of them are still raking in the cash from these nice little earners as the deadline approaches.

“Given how many hours these MPs are spending on their big money side hustles, constituents will wonder if they ever find any time to do the day job.

“It’s time to clean up the cash for access culture Boris Johnson has created at the heart of the British government. Labour would ban dodgy second jobs, close the revolving door on lobbying and create a genuinely independent Integrity and Ethics Commission to restore standards in public life.”

The Mirror has contacted the Conservative Party for comment.


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