Blogs are reporting tonight that a third Conservative MP is to stand down from the House of Commons at the next election. This time its Sir Peter Viggers, and its reportedly at the direct request of David Cameron. Its being reported that Sir Peter claimed lots of money for his garden, including for a 'floating duck island'. And there are other big stories, including reports that Geoff Hoon and James Parnell have not paid CGT, (which is not liable on a second home if its 'flipped' into a main home). Entirely legal, but Gordon Brown described this practice as 'totally unacceptable' when referring to Hazel Blears having done it. The tax authorities saying that there was no tax to pay is completely irrelevant. And my good friend, Bill Wiggin is reported to have queries to answer. All this on top of yesterday's removal of the Speaker. Its carnage out there.
There was an interesting discussion on Newsnight tonight about whether a General Election could be held to give the people a say. It was clear that the Labour spokesman did not want an early election. He kept maintaining that all these allegation had to be cleared up first. He seemed to believe that the present Parliament should clear up the mess before the people are consulted. Personally, I think this would be madness. The problem is that they still don't get it. They still don't realise just how mad the people are. They want their say - now. What needs to happen is that all receipts should be made public tomorrow. Why on earth not. What difference would it make? The Telegraph can keep this going for days - picking two or three off each day. Once receipts are published, constituency associations would need a week to decide whether to reselect, or deselect. Another two weeks would be needed to select another candidate - if needed. And a General Election the last week in June. No-one is pretending that this is anything but desperately rushed stuff. But we cannot let things drift on until October. Our democracy is at stake.