Julie Kirkbride’s resignation yesterday seems to have lowered the bar at which MPs are expected to step down (by the next general election, that is).
Her expense claims were arguably as credible – or more so – than many others who are still happily clinging on to power, as Iain Dale points out. (He accurately points out that public/media judgments on the affair have become increasingly subjective).
It had seemed curious that some of those facing much more damning allegations were untouched. But that could start to be remedied tonight when Elliot Morley faces his constituents. The rumour (not rumour, unvarnished truth, Paul Waugh tells me) is that he will step down, or promise to do so at the next general election. You may remember that Morley stands accused of claiming £16,000 for a mortgage which no longer existed.
The former agriculture minister has already been suspended by the Labour Party and Scotland Yard is considering whether to launch a criminal probe.
I’ve put a call in to Labour to ask whether David Chaytor is considering a similar move – and will update.
Meanwhile a great piece in the Guardian about scores of Labour MPs begging to be let into the Lords.
It’s Friday evening and Morley has gone. Here is the BBC story.