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MP who said £82K salary was ‘really grim’ voted to cut benefits 49 times

09 Oct 2021 3 minutes Read
Sir Peter Bottomley. UK Parliament (CC 3.0) Liz Saville Roberts MP by Richard Townshend (CC BY 3.0).

The Tory MP slammed this week for claiming that MPs need a pay rise because living on £81k can be “really grim” voted to cut welfare and benefits 49 times over a four-year period.

In an interview with the New Statesman Peter Bottomley suggested that MPs, who are paid £81,932 a year, should earn as much as GPs, whose average salary in England is £100,700, which would mean a pay rise of 22%.

The Tory MP for Worthing West’s jarring comments came the day before his party enacted the biggest benefit cut in history by removing the £20-a-week uplift to Universal Credit and throwing millions of Britons into poverty overnight.

At the same time, Therese Coffey, the Work and Pensions Secretary, was videoed singing ‘I Had The Time Of My Life’ at the Conservative Party conference.

Many posts this week, including from food writer and activist Jack Monroe, pointed out that MPs get a daily £25 allowance for meals while they are in the commons.

Liz Saville Roberts, the Plaid Cymru MP for Dwyfor Meirionnydd, said the “crass” comments by Sir Peter Bottomley show how “out of touch the Westminster elite really are”.

The remarks by Sir Peter, who as the oldest MP in the Commons is ‘Father of the House’, come as the UK Government is slashing the £20 uplift to Universal Credit and amid a public sector pay freeze in the wake of the pandemic.

‘It’s really grim’

Bottomley told the New Statesman: “I take the view that being an MP is the greatest honour you could have, but a general practitioner in politics ought to be paid roughly the same as a general practitioner in medicine.”

“Doctors are paid far too little nowadays. But if they would get roughly £100,000 a year, the equivalent for an MP to get the same standard of living would be £110-£115,000 a year – it’s never the right time, but if your MP isn’t worth the money, it’s better to change the MP than to change the money.”

He claimed colleagues financial struggle on their salaries, he said: “I don’t know how they manage. It’s really grim.”

Liz Saville Roberts said: “On the day the UK Government cut the annual household budgets of 275,000 families in Wales by over £1000, this crass remark reveals just how out of touch the Westminster elite really are.

“Plaid Cymru has always argued that MPs should have no say whatsoever in how much they’re paid.”

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Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
14 days ago

Out of touch or Sadistic Personality Disorder ?

Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
14 days ago
Reply to  Mab Meirion

Father of the House. He has been an MP since 1975, his wife is a life peer in the House of Lords. The man has been on benefits almost his entire working life…personal wealth top secret but likely several million quid…

Quornby
Quornby
14 days ago

Tories really are lower than vermin if they think like this person. Word on the street is that they really do.

Argol Fawr
Argol Fawr
14 days ago

Comparing himself to a doctor is grim. Whereas most doctors work to improve the lives of others, a tory politician’s credo is to improve their own (and mates).

Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
14 days ago
Reply to  Argol Fawr

Especially at this time when they are, in the flesh, as rare as rocking horse poo !

Huw Davies
Huw Davies
13 days ago
Reply to  Argol Fawr

I’m pretty sure that his daughter is a doctor.

hdavies15
hdavies15
14 days ago

Hanging him from a lamp post would be an act of kindness to society in general. Senile old goat with overdeveloped sense of entitlement yet cheerfully screwing claimants into further poverty.

j humphrys
j humphrys
13 days ago
Reply to  hdavies15

Victorian values.

hdavies15
hdavies15
13 days ago
Reply to  j humphrys

No, mine are prehistoric !

Kerry Davies
Kerry Davies
13 days ago

He gets his salary, plus up to £200K expenses, £15K for travel and he declares income from 6 rental properties.
His wife gets a cabinet ministerial pension, plus the House of Lords pay and expenses so if his household clears less than £350K- £400K before tax I would be surprised.

Erisian
Erisian
13 days ago

And what is worse is that he said it out loud, in public.
What was expecting? Applause? Sympathy? A crowdfunder page?
I think a kick up the backside and a very thorough audit of his expenses claims, earnings and tax affairs would be in order.

Steve Duggan
Steve Duggan
12 days ago

There is an element of society that is like this – cruel, sadistic and greedy. They have been in charge in one form or another since at least the Norman conquest.If we are to achieve fairness and equality we need, at least, a proper written constitution, something to try and keep the corruption in check. It won’t happen while we are part of the UK and under Tory control – the system benefits them too much.

Quornby
Quornby
7 days ago
Reply to  Steve Duggan

Absolutely…… independence can’t come quickly enough.

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