Blair and Martin Deliberately Dismantled Commons Anti-Sleaze Apparatus 7

The memories of political commentators are short. It is remarkable how little the name of Elizabeth Filkin has featured in discussion of the current massive sleaze revelations.

The outcry against Commons sleaze at the end of the Major government led to a toughening up of regulation. The Blair government found this inconvenient, particularly when standards commissioner Elizabeth Filkin was investigating ministers Geoffrey Robinson, John Reid and Keith Vaz.

So Blair and Martin forced her out, replacing her with someone more compliant, on a markedly lower salary and with less resources to do the job.

The culture of sleaze and corruption did not accrue accidentally and innocently. It was entered into quite deliberately, and New Labour ruthlessly eliminated obstacles to corruption.

This is the BBC interview Filkin gave as she was forced out:

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7 thoughts on “Blair and Martin Deliberately Dismantled Commons Anti-Sleaze Apparatus

  • David Boycott

    Quite – it’s unbelievable how little coverage there has been about this.

    Surely she deserves to be on the new government’s first honours list?

  • delboy711

    Elizabeth Filkin would make another fine “clean hands” candidate at the next election.

    Here is the Daily Mail’s perspective on her treatment from New Labour.

    The smearing with rumours of being a “mad alchoholic” sounds familiar.

  • Iain Orr

    Re-listening to the Elizabeth Filkin interview (which I remember at the time) takes me back to the arch-corruptor of public morality – Tony Blair and his team. The more the current revelations are put in their historical context – the deliberate moves to protect MPs from robust scrutiny – the greater the odds of securing these three essentials:

    1 – An early General Election. [Perhaps it needs several MPs – best from all three main parties – to resign their seats and campaign for re-election on the single issue: the need for a General Election in the autumn.]

    2 – A concerted effort to get decent existing MPs (there are some) and new candidates elected who are committed to far better parliamentary oversight of government. (Ready to rebel against stupid legislation and the membership and Chair of select committees to be immune to manipulation by the Whips.)

    3 – All prima facie evidence of fraud by MPs (within whichever period is relevant to criminal offences) is examined and action taken. Given the fragility of International Law, we may need to catch Tony Blair in an Al Capone Revenue & Customs net.

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