It may be American Football close season, but this ain't about sport but Livington MP Jim Devine. As if it wasn't bad enough that the MP has claimed phantom shelving and had his flat rewired at public expense from a non-Vat registered electrician, he's not even bothering to do the job his pay and expenses are supposedly supporting.
Since he was deselected for the seat earlier this year Devine has only voted 24% of the time. This is a disgrace but not as bad as Margaret Moran who is in Esther Rantzen's sights in Luton South, who after claiming £22,500 for dry rot to be sorted out on her partner's house in Brighton, neither near Westminster nor her constituency has failed to vote at all.
It is bad enough that these MPs, along with David Chaytor, Derek Conway, Sir Peter Viggers and Anthony Steen, have already failed their constituents by their claims, they are now failing them by failing to do the job of work that is expected of them. If any of us failed to turn up for work in our places of employment we'd soon be disciplined and shown the door.
These MPs may still have almost a full year left to 'serve' the people who voted for them, even if they are not able to carry on after that. Reform is needed so that MPs who are not performing their duties can face a call back if a sizable enough section of their constituents demand it. Otherwise we may have an awful lot of lame ducks MPs hobbling from their nicely furnished flats in London to the Terrace at Westminster for lunch and drinks and nothing more.