After Jeremy Hunt appeared in front of Leveson this week Labour have tried to throw a few political point scoring grenades with calls for an inquiry over him breaking the ministerial code in relation to the BSkyB Bid. We all know it is just political point scoring and gets all the politicos on various sides excited at the prospect of getting one over the opposition.
The biggest problem I have with all this posturing is those requesting them seem to not have a care in the world whose money they are spending; the taxpayers.
A line that is often spun out is that ‘it is the price of honesty’ when it comes to spending on inquiries, the reality is it gives a few people a few jobs for a short time and costs thousands, or hundreds of thousands in several cases millions. What would be the result of this money being spent in the cases where it is political point scoring?
Nothing in the long term.
The reality is the ministerial code of conduct is an irrelevance, it has no standing and you can break the rules until your heart is content. Their is no independent committee who judges, it is all at the discretion of the sitting Prime Minister. So now we have the current position of Labour wishing to spend the public’s money again, just to try and get one over in the media. It is a shame that a lot of politicians forget the money they are spending non stop is the public’s. If they would like an inquiry that will gain a few headlines for a few weeks then surely they can pay for it themselves.
If they really wanted to do the right thing and be open and honest then maybe asking for Leveson to expand on this area, would be the least expensive way to investigate further. After all their is already an inquiry into the relationship between press and politicians, this would merely be a minor extension.
Labour are using this to try and point score and get some free advertising in the media in which they can roll out Harriet Harman and Chris Bryant, after all these two are the epitome of honest dealings. The later who has already made false claims as a core participant in the inquiry showing his high moral standings and views of the inquiry itself. If politicians would like to be more honest, open and remember who is footing the bill for their latest headlines. Then myself and the public at large would have a far higher view of them.