MP: Publishing expenses receipts could be 'grubby and salacious'

Conservative MP David MacLean, who last year sponsored a controversial private member’s bill to exempt Parliament from the Freedom of Information Act, is interviewed today in the Cumberland News.

Asked whether MPs’ shouldn’t be more accountable to the electorate about how they spend their allowances, MacLean said: “Yes, but not to that extent. It becomes grubby and salacious. People do have a right to know ‘Did I use taxpayers’ money improperly?’ but getting down to individual receipt items to see where you bought your pillowcases is just a bit silly. If we publish whether we bought pizza or fish and chips it won’t improve our standing.”

Maclean’s comments come on the day when receipts for 14 past and present MPs expenses are expected to be published following a High Court victory by three journalists who had requested them under the Freedom of Information Act.

According to the Telegraph, the Commons members Estimate Committee has also agreed to publish about 1 million receipts covering claims from all 646 MPs.

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