The panel will include Health Minister Ben Bradshaw, Conservative shadow foreign secretary William Hague, Lib Dem chief economic spokesman Vince Cable, former independent MP Martin Bell, treasurer of UKIP Marta Andreasen, and columnist Yasmin Alibhai-Brown. It kicks off at 9pm – much earlier than normal.

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Listen carefully to Martin Bell if he is asked about his expense claims when an MP. I think he has something to hide as he indicated recently he only claimed what the Fees Office allowed or some such obfuscating statement.


  2. Dick says:

    Yasmin Alibhai-Bro – whey hey hey. It’s a party……


  3. bof says:

    Wot,no Rantzen??


  4. Anonymous says:

    who the hell is Marta Andreasen?


  5. Battersea says:

    The BBC are rubbing their hands with glee, they are riding this wave of contempt for politicians. Now they can portray themselves on the side of the ‘people’.

    Yasmin Alibhai-Brown is milking it for all its worth.

    So far all the attacks have been on Hague! What about attacks on Brown, Jacqui, Blears? What rank hypocrisy!!!!!!!!!!


  6. battersea says:

    Dimbelbore should be sacked for his sheer bias against the Tories. Al-Beeb have just sent a signal to New Labour: We deserved that rise in the fee, we played our part.


  7. Ron Todd says:

    Didn’t Martin Bell work for the BBC. We know what those buggers get paid.

    It is easy for the rich to be honest.


  8. Colm says:

    I am fed up with MPs talking about reforming the system. This is nothing to do with the system, it is all about what MPs personally decided they should try to claim from the taxpayer. Even if the fees office tells an MP he can claim for his Home cinema system, that MP should say “Thanks but I won’t. I cannot justify claiming this expense from the public purse”. This is about personal morality and ethics, not changing the rules.


  9. Ron Todd says:


    You are correct

    If there had been a culture of not claiming more than what a normal person would accept as reasonable the present rules would have been fine.


  10. Professor Pizzle says:

    Yet again, another member of the mediocracy, Yasmin A B, gleefully railing against the ‘corrupt’ politicians, and how they ‘kept quiet’ all these years.

    Err… what about her?

    Didi she not have access to the media via her endless columns and appearences? Couldn’t she have told us about it?

    And as for portraying herself as one-of-us, exactly how much does she earn a year? I suspect it is in the £100,000+ region. And like Polly, I bet she has extensive savings added to over the years from the public purse (BBc etc).


  11. Grant says:

    Anon 8:59
    Marta was Chief Accountant at the EU and was sacked and persecuted by the EU fascists when she whistleblew about the corruption and bullying in the EU.
    She is a very brave woman. If you want to find out more you can google it.


  12. poor voter says:

    NHS nurses are not even supposed to have a cup of tea that is meant for patients, even if there is some left over, on the grounds that they may make more tea than necessary in order to get a cup of free tea.


  13. John Horne Tooke says:


    Just think for a moment why the talk on the BBC and among the left leaning think tanks are now talking about changing the system.

    Who is favorite to win the next election?


  14. Colm says:


    It’s not really about changing the system ; although i do think i understand the point you are making – Make it hard for the Tories to claim eh ? – Whatever system is in place will have at it’s core the principle that the use of public money should be proportional, genuinely necessary for work related purposes and value for money. It is wheter MPs genuinely honour those principles that matters.


  15. dave s says:

    I cannot stomach Dimbleby taking the side, if that is what he thinks he is doing of the “people”
    He and the rest of the BBC presenters and executives are on just as much as a gravy train at the taxpayer’s expense.
    There is little difference.MPs make the laws .The BBC tells us what to think.
    WE need as a matter of urgency to know just what the BBC expenses are and who claims what and when.
    It would be instructive if the salaries of the top executives were permantly displayed on the side bar of this blog
    To remind the “people” who the next bunch of troughers are and who also needs to be bought to account..


  16. John Horne Tooke says:

    I agree Colm – it is not the system that needs to be changed just the people in charge of it.
    But to the BBC and their left leaning friends they seem to be using this “crisis” as a rallying cry to change the way we are governed.

    The socialists have been discredited and the chances of winning the next election are almost nil. So what is the best strategy for them – well why not change the system of government.
    Yet the BBC never mentioned changing the system when Blair got his landslide.

    On PM the other day – there was endless talk that this crises over expenses “gives us” the opportunity to change how parliament works, not only on expenses, but on the whole nature of government.


  17. Anonymous says:

    The Yazzer – what an irritating, self-important scold she is. I’d call her Yenta if she wasn’t a (heretical Ismaili) fausse-Muslim.



  18. John Horne Tooke says:

    dave s – actually it would be better if the BBC were forced to tell us their political affiliations rather that how much they are paid.

    For instance before Bowen gave us his reports on the Middle East the listener was reminded that one of his friends was killed by the IDF.

    And before Peston gave us his impartial opinions on the economy that he was Gordon Browns biographer etc.


  19. John Horne Tooke says:

    Yasmin Alibhai-Browns mission is to destroy "Old Britain" – Yet I don't hear the BBC types label her a racist. Read the piece below to see what she really thinks of the country and its people who gave her sanctuary in the 1970s


  20. dave s says:

    John Horne Tooke
    It is the money that is going to get them in the end.It , unlike political opinions, is cold hard fact.
    That is why they are all so scared.
    First the money then their rotten bias.


  21. katherine says:

    Please please someone find something dodgy on Martin Bell.He is such a sanctimonious prat.And that awful white suit it must stink.


  22. Oscar Miller says:

    Martin Bell was never an independent – he was always the puppet of the Labour party. The whole anti-Tory sleaze wheeze in Tatton was masterminded by Alistair Campbell and Campbell himself called it a “scam”. It’s all in his diaries:

    Thurs March 27 1997Sleaze was big again. I had the thought that we should field a single anti-Hamilton, independent, anti-corruption candidate in Tatton. I rang around for a few thoughts and most people were up for it. GB said he had been thinking of the same thing.

    Fri March 28 1997… it was mainly about Tatton and the plan, agreed yesterday, to pull out our man and get the Lib Dems to do the same and try to get a single anti-corruption candidate…We would pile the pressure on the Tories, get days of good coverage out of their problems, and if we got the right candidate it would become one of THE stories of the election, run the whole way through and Hamilton would probably lose his seat at the end.”

    Fri April 4 1997“Martin Bell … said he would like to be the anti-corruption candidate. It was perfect. … I spoke to Bell, who said he would love to do it if we would have him”.

    Saturday March 29 1997“The Hamilton scam was a rare total triumph, the splash I think in all the heavies, and a good show in the tabloids, big on the broadcasts today. Peter M was worried it would unravel at the candidate’s press conference, but I had a long chat with him and with David Evans before they did it, then set off with the boys for Burnley.”

    So much for independence. Campbell was only interested in anti-sleaze as a political gambit and Martin Bell needed to revive his flagging career. It never had anything to do with a sincere desire to clean-up Westminster.


  23. The Cattle Prod of Destiny says:

    I noticed that this programme was billed earlier in the day as Martin Bell, anti-coruption campaigner vs William Hague, Tory.

    No mention of the slimeball from labour or Minger Campbell.

    Oscar Miller
    Very true & well put. Bell was labour stooge and the BBC know it. Will they ever admit it? Will they … ! 🙁

    As to a change in the constitution arising from this fiasco of a Parliament. Do we really want these venal incompetants pissing about & re-arranging the deckchairs as the country sinks in a sea of economic woes? The whole thing is starting to smell like the Weimar Republic.


  24. It's all too much says:

    yasmin wrote an article for the independent where she bewailed the fact that BME MPs and MPs on the left were on the take. She understood how Tories could be venal – you expect that sort of behavior, but she was shocked by the fact that black left wing MPs would stoop to such behavior. She felt “betrayed”. Interesting isn’t it how ones race makes one intrinsically virtuous. Attributing intrinsic racial characteristics is plain old fashioned racism as fara as I am concerned. It is also laughably wrong. There are paragons of financial probity in the leadership and champions of human rights in the leadership of africa. There are far too many corrupt people to even make a start – from the lowest office holder to the president in every African nation. Secondly the left has no claim to moral superiority. As apologists for Stalinism, Marxism and Leninism how dare she claim they have a higher moral stance than the Conservatives


  25. It's all too much says:

    “I do feel more revulsion and fury when those on the respectable left or black and Asian people turn out to have been implicated in this latest bonfire of the vanities. We should expect better from them than the grandees Douglas Hogg, and Michael Ancram and others with moats, tennis courts and many other such burdens.”

    Link to the above story


  26. Grant says:

    Was it my imagination, but did someone not ask Dimblebore to have a “show of hands” on whether we should have an early General Election and he ignored it ?


  27. Oscar Miller says:

    Cattleprod – agreed, it is smelling like a latterday Weimar. And can you imagine if a Tory spin doctor had set up an “anti sleaze” candidate against a Labour MP and called it a “scam” in his diary? There’s no way it would somehow be overlooked and suppressed by the BBC. We’d never hear the last of it.

    No it wasn’t your imagination. There was a request for a show of hands on having an election, which when it suits them both Dimblebores (on telly and radio) love to oblige. But on this occasion Dimblebore the Elder abruptly ignored the request and moved swiftly on. No need to guess why.


  28. Grant says:

    Oscar 5:09
    Imagine if it had been the dying days of the Major government !
    Dimblebore wouldn’t even have had to be asked, it would be first item on the agenda.