Friday, 11 November 2011
Consequences... or lack there of
So Nadine Dorries thinks that Tom Watson "let himself down" (58mins 12secs) and "jumped the shark" (58mins 22secs) by calling James Murdoch a "mafia boss".
I wonder what she thinks about herself saying that "you let 2.2 million in" (26mins 20secs) to Rachel Reeves, shadow Chief Secretary to the Treasury, last night (Thursday 10 November, 2011) on Question Time.
This is an outrageous, wildly inaccurate claim. Googling "2.2 million immigration UK" returns a whole range of sources scotching it. 2.2 million was actually the net migration over the 12 years of the previous Labour government. It has absolutely nothing to do with a breach in security, or people entering the country without the authority's knowledge, or without having the right to do so (the context in which her comment was made).
Some relevant snippets from the Google search below:
"But under Labour, net migration to Britain was close to 200,000 per year, for most years since 2000. As a result, over Labour’s time in office net migration totalled more than 2.2 million people – more than double the population of Birmingham"
"The prime minister will open his speech, in Hampshire, by saying that immigration is a hugely emotive subject that must be handled with sensitivity. But he will then say that Labour presided over the "largest influx" of immigration in British history, which saw 2.2 million more people settling in Britain between 1997 and 2009 than leaving to live abroad".
"Between 1997 and 2009, 2.2 million more people came to live in Britain than those who left to live abroad, Mr Cameron will say"
My mum has a number of sayings that she's fond of - one of which is "No horse play on the stairs", but that's not really relevant here. Another is "There'll be consequences" - she's particularly keen on this one when dealing with naughty grandchildren.
I guess what I'm increasingly wondering is what are the consequences for MPs making false claims?
No, not false expense claims - we all know that can now carry consequences. I mean false claims like the one last night. Or these about the NHS. And also, on the same type topic, what are the consequences of refusing to answer straightforward questions, as highlighted by this sorry episode?
Are there any consequences? And if not, why on earth not?!?
P.S. I guess if I'm being strictly fair, Dorries could claim she didn't say that Labour explicitly let in 2.2 million illegal immigrants. But look at the context in which she said it, and decide for yourself. Also, the fact it went unchallenged at the time is massively damaging, as chances are, no-one cares enough to correct / clarify it, so now it's just out there... festering.
P.P.S. Oh, and don't get me started about the "statistics" (24mins 40secs; 25mins 30secs) that Dorries gave... I await full publication and open scrutiny of them! And Michael Moore MP seemed to say that the pilot was still being "evaluated" (29mins 38secs)...