Magazine article New Statesman (1996)

New Scandal Revealed: Our MPs Are Now Paid by the Word

Magazine article New Statesman (1996)

New Scandal Revealed: Our MPs Are Now Paid by the Word

Article excerpt

* The Supreme Leader's warm embrace of Blairites isn't reciprocated on the factory floor. As Uncle Gordie was promoting the Ant and Dec of Blairism, fresh-faced Andy Burnham and James Purnell, Labour backbenchers were jettisoning the last Blairite on the six-strong shop stewards' panel.

Shona Mclsaac, for it was the Cleethorpes cyberlass, was booted off the parliamentary committee in favour of that London gel, Dawn Butler (below). McLoser's parting gift was inadvertently to hand top slot to the left's granny, the newly crowned vice-chair Ann Cryer. McLoser lobbied Blairites to vote for her and the Campaign Group veteran as the two lady members to beat Butler. Only one bit--the wrong bit--of her great strategy worked.

* The row over the Queen's failure to attend Sir Edmund Hillary's funeral could have been worse. The powers that be intended to despatch five foot-nothing Ian McCartney, until a bigwig thought better, sending the human hillock to the burial of Everest's conqueror being rightly judged risky. Labour has two prominent mountaineers, excluding social climbers, in Kim Howells and Denis MacShane. But they prefer to stick ice picks in each other's heads.

* Pssst. That Cameroon Ed "Crazy" Vaizey swallowing a herbal Viagra substitute on TV to improve his poll ratings is still the talk of the palace. The Tory frontbencher is a father-of-one, so I refuse to believe entertaining rumours spread by posh new Labour types, supposedly based on gossip from Crazy's old flames. …

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