David Laws: very sad, very wrong, completely unacceptable

It is tragic that in this day and age the Chief Secretary to the Treasury, David Laws, did not feel comfortable being himself and accepting his sexuality.  He is homosexual.  So what?  It is tragic that he was concerned that his privacy would not be respected, despite this being no one’s business but his and his partner’s.  It is tragic that  he felt compelled to construct a charade in an attempt to hide orientation.  I think it is very, very sad.

However, the fact is £40,000 of taxpayers’ money was wrongly claimed and given to his partner to fund David Laws’ charade.  That was the choice he made and the price we paid.  No matter how uncomfortable Laws might have felt if his sexuality became more widely known, he deliberately broke the rules on expenses and effectively defrauded the public for his own ends.  That is wrong and completely unacceptable.

Regardless of how effective or otherwise David Laws is as a minister, regardless that he is paying the money back, for all the spin about ‘new politics’ and the coalition setting aside many differences in the ‘national interest’, the public purse has been used to underwrite David Laws’ self interest.  This is evidence the political class is still at it at our expense.  We can likely expect more abuses to surface despite the supposed drive to clean up Parliament.

Irrespective of the ‘human’ angle to this story, this was snout in the trough behaviour and a clear abuse commited by an independently wealthy man.  I sympathise with Laws’ desire to have his privacy respected, but not when it comes at a financial cost to me and other taxpayers.  He has a bloody cheek, but no more than many in the political class who possess a similar sense of entitlement to subsidy through our money.  David Laws must resign his government post, or be sacked immediately.

Unsurprisingly, Iain Dale hopes that Laws survives. Having fallen for the sob story statement Laws has made, Dales opines:

I hope David Laws survives this, partly because I do not believe he has a dishonest bone in his body, but also because the Coalition needs him. He has been hugely impressive over the last few weeks. But of course there will be questions about his future. It will be a test for him as to whether he can survive the pressure, but I truly hope he does.

The fact is Laws decided to interpret the rules in a manner that benefited him at public expense.  He was cohabiting with his partner and only using our money to pay rent in order to maintain a deception.  I don’t give a damn if the coalition needs him, or if he has seemed impressive.  His actions are unacceptable and he has acted in a less than honest manner.

Update: Guido thinks Laws will probably survive because he is too important to the coalition.  If that proves to be accurate then we would see the coalition interest being put before public interest.  Not sacking Laws has the capacity to harm the coalition far more than keeping him in post because it is a matter of probity.  If Laws stays then we will have the first entry in the Little Blue and Yellow Book of Coalition Sleaze.  Note to the government: Wrongdoing must never go unpunished.

David Laws resigns and panic replacement arrives >>>

David Laws: Insipid political class circles the wagons >>>

6 Responses to “David Laws: very sad, very wrong, completely unacceptable”

  1. 1 The King of Wrong 29/05/2010 at 10:22 am

    I agree that he’s a disgrace as an MP, but I think there are two mitigating factors that should be considered.

    Firstly, £950pcm is very cheap for rent in central London, so no matter who it was paid to, it’s almost certainly cheaper than any other option he could have chosen.

    Secondly, who really benefits from this revelation? Are the unions/civil service fighting dirty over the proposed cuts? And, if they force Laws out, is his replacement going to fare any better.

    All in all, though, this is an absolute gift to headline writers – “bent” in both senses of the word, and he broke the “Laws”.

  2. 2 JohnRS 29/05/2010 at 3:35 pm

    Looks like the LimpDum piggies are just as dirty as the other two herds of troughing swine.

    If WotsIsName wont fire Laws then CallMeDave must…after all he’s the PM.

  1. 1 David Laws resigns and panic replacement arrives « Autonomous Mind Trackback on 30/05/2010 at 11:32 am
  2. 2 David Laws: Insipid political class circles the wagons « Autonomous Mind Trackback on 30/05/2010 at 11:35 am
  3. 3 William Hague has questions to answer as Tory mouthpiece starts to circle the wagons « Autonomous Mind Trackback on 01/09/2010 at 11:09 am
  4. 4 David Laws’ return would be contempt of taxpayers « Autonomous Mind Trackback on 20/12/2010 at 5:40 pm
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