The hoo-hah over MPs salaries doesn't just demonstrate how to drop a clanger, but it highlights what is missing from the debate as well.
I wonder whether 2014 might be the time to have a proper discussion about what it is our MPs are meant to do for us.
There’s no job description for an MP. The role has evolved over several hundred years and the idea of what is ‘representing your constituents’ has changed beyond recognition, even in the last few decades. Should we measure an MP's activity? His or her contribution to local life or to creating legislation? How easy he or she is to get hold of?
I’m amazed some MPs hold down one, two and more private jobs as well as being an MP. I find being an MP is more than full-time, so I don’t have a clue how they do it!
I don’t mean the doctors, drivers and others who need a minimum number of working hours to keep their skills updated so they stay registered – general elections can deliver a brutal end to any MP’s term, so keeping qualified is fair. He or she may need to return to his or her old job!Read more