Statements from some Conservative candidates

I had a read of this earlier today.  I have sent comments of my own in.  They are as follows:

As one of the London Parliamentary Candidates, I know that there is one issue that has stood out, long before the Telegraph became involved in the way that they have recently.  That issue is London Members of Parliament being able to acquire a second property funded, either fully or partly, by the taxpayer.

The most important single commitment I wish to make to my prospective constituents in Feltham & Heston is that I would continue to live in my constituency and not require a second property, even if the rules allow it.  There is no justification of any kind for a London MP needing a publicly funded second property.

I was on the platform at the 2005 count in Feltham & Heston, along with the then victor, Alan Keen, who promised to explain why he needed a second property in order to enable him to fulfil his role.  It was only this week that we heard from him.  Much of the article will horrify most people, including Labour supporters:

http://www.hounslowchronicle.co.uk/west-london-news/local-hounslow-news/2009/05/20/alan-keen-comes-out-fighting-over-expenses-109642-23675929/

Here is the bit that will offend most hardworking people:

Mr Keen has pledged to stand his ground and argued that it would be impossible for him to do his work and make the 30 minute commute every day.

“People may say they commute into London but there are not many people who work from early in the morning to very late at night every day. It is a very unusual culture,” he said. “It seems unreasonable to some people but they don’t understand the house is active every night of every day, irrespective of whether there are votes.”

If elected, I will commute to Parliament from either Feltham Train Station or Hatton Cross Tube Station.  If the House sits very late and public transport has finished, then nothing wrong with a taxi to get me home to my family in Feltham!

I have always taken the view that no person should go short for dedicating themselves to public service and I would only claim for any legitimate expenses incurred as a result of being the MP.

Finally, the first four bullet points on Ben Jones list are ones I am already supportive of and committed to.

Mark Bowen

Conservative Parliamentary Candidate in Feltham & Heston

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